By Richard Edwards and Mark Lavery/YorkshireÂ Evening Post
A MUSLIM teacher divorced his severely disabled wife without her knowing so he could keep access to her Â£1m compensation, Leeds Crown Court heard.Khalil Kazi, believed to be a former imam at Armley jail and in Batley Carr, married again under Islamic law in Morocco while his original wife, Meimuna, thought she was still married, the jury was told. Mrs Kazi only learned her marriage had been dissolved when she applied for a divorce.Prosecuting David Hall said that Kazi, 39, of Batley Carr, had falsified divorce papers and perjured himself by falsely swearing a witness statement for a grant of divorce.Â Â Â
His plot collapsed after four years, in 2006, Mr Hall said, when Mrs Kazi visited Dewsbury County Court in March 2006 to apply for a decree of judicial separation.
Giving evidence wearing a veil, wheelchair user Mrs Kazi told the court how she reacted when she was told there was already a divorce in place.
She said: “My solicitor went to speak to Mr Kazi’s solicitor and she came back with the shocking news that I was already divorced… I was very shocked. I trusted my husband and I never expected he would do this to me.”Â Â Â
She added: “I felt very guilty he had lived with me for one year living in adultery.
He never told me at any time he had divorced me. He never mentioned anything about a divorce.”Â Â Â
Mrs Kazi’s decision to file for a divorce followed her husband’s admission that he had married while in Morocco.
Mrs Kazi told the court she was 16 when she and Kazi married in 1995. A year later they had a son and two years later Mrs Kazi sought treatment for back pain.
Mr Hall said Mrs Kazi visited Dewsbury Hospital where she was advised her problem was a minor one and should be dealt with by her GP.
“It turned out she was suffering from an epidural abscess,” Mr Hall said. “It was traced back to the birth. By the time it was diagnosed Mrs Kazi had been rendered paraplegic. She sued Mid-Yorkshire Hospital Trust for negligence, a case that was settled with a payment of Â£1m.”
He said a specially adapted home had been provided for her at Skipton Street, but her husband did not want to move and so she stayed at Warwick Road.
The defendant bought Skipton Street under the right to buy, but Mrs Kazi thought her husband had used her compensation money without her permission, Mr Hall said.
Kazi, of Warwick Road, denies perjury and perverting the course of justice.