When giving evidence at Leicester Crown Court, Ansreen Bukhari, 46, described how her daughter’s fame on TikTok had completely transformed her life.
“When I got married, I was like a housewife, but with this TikTok thing, I was dating more. It was like two different lives,” she said. “It was more exciting. We were out and meeting people and stuff.
Born in Pakistan, she moved to the UK as a baby and had ambitions to become a flight attendant, but her parents prevented her from going to university.
Her daughter, Mehek, who has 128,000 followers on TikTok, where she posts beauty and lifestyle content, told the court how she would take her mother to events and parties she was invited to, saying, “ She’s like a sister to me, we’re best friends, and I know I couldn’t trust her with anything. That’s why I would take it.
In a video on Mehek’s TikTok channel, the couple can be seen doing a synchronized dance routine under the caption, “Having an elite relationship with your mum >>>”.
It was in the wake of this new world of parties and popularity that Ansreen and her daughter became embroiled in a web of lies and eventually became part of a plot to murder two young men who were killed in a ball. of fire when their car was driven away. the road.
One of the victims was Saqib Hussain, 21, who met Ansreen online about three years before his death – he was 18 then, but he lied and told her he was 27.
The couple started a sexual relationship, meeting in hotels in Birmingham and London, and he frequently sent gifts to the house where she lived with her husband, son and Mehek.
When the case first went to trial in 2022, before being dropped due to “jury impropriety”, Ansreen claimed her relationship with Hussain was a one-time mistake.
However, before the retrial, police were able to access Hussain’s iCloud account and discovered photos and videos that showed the couple had met several times over several years. Ansreen said she had lied before to try to protect her marriage.
She claimed that she had tried to end the relationship several times, but that Hussain would not accept her decision and threatened to expose their affair to her husband and son with intimate photos and videos.
Mehek said she was upset and angry with her mum when she found out about the affair. She had a strong personal dislike of Hussain, saying that at one point he posted images of her face superimposed on a naked body online.
“He was a manipulative person and he was just plain mean,” she told the court, adding that he was “fundamentally narcissistic” and “a stalker.”
The court read an excerpt from dozens of messages Hussain had sent to Ansreen before her death, in which he repeatedly threatened to come to her house, and said things such as “you’re getting on my nerves more and more. ignorant”, “I’m going to do something you’re going to regret” and “I’m a crazy bastard”.
The messages show Hussain demanding £3,000 which he claimed he spent on Ansreen during their relationship. Mehek contacted her longtime friend Rekan Karwan, she claimed, to sort out the money.
The prosecution alleged that the group had in fact concocted a plot to kill or seriously injure Hussain, luring him to a Tesco car park in Leicester late at night where Karwan and his friends were waiting wearing balaclavas and carrying at least one weapon: a wheel wrench.
The plan went awry when Hussain, led by his friend Mohammed Hashim Ijazuddin, 21, suspected something was up and drove off, closely pursued by two cars containing Mehek, Ansreen, Karwan and five others called to help.
Leaving Leicester, the cars reached speeds of up to 100mph before Hussain’s car was thrown off the road, hitting a tree and bursting into flames.
Both Ansreen and Mehek clung to the story that the car just lost control and they chased Hussain hoping he would agree to sit down and talk to them.
But it was clear the group had worked together after the accident to hide their involvement. When the police came to the Bukhari family home to make arrests, Mehek told them that she and her mum drove to Nottingham, not Leicester.
She lied to the police about her phone password so they couldn’t access her messages, but she sent a message to her mother in which she said Karwan asked them to say to the police that they were the only two people in the car at the time.
It was these lies that led the couple to come apart and ultimately be convicted of murder alongside their accomplices.