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Jun 01,2007
Breakup may have led to killings
by UPI

ANAHEIM, Calif. - Investigators say a breakup between an Anaheim, Calif., student and her former boyfriend may be connected to the slayings of her father and sister.

The investigators say Shayona Dhanak, an 18-year-old University of California, Irvine, freshmen, broke up with her boyfriend of three years, Iftekhar Murtaza, 22, shortly before her father and sister were killed and her mother was severely beaten, The Los Angeles Times reported Thursday. Court records say the victims were strangled, bludgeoned, burned and stabbed.

The girl's Hindu family had disapproved of her relationship with Murtaza, a Muslim, investigators told the Times.

Murtaza was arrested at the Phoenix airport in connection with the slayings. Murtaza, who had been carrying a one-way ticket to Bangladesh at the time of his arrest, was being held in Phoenix as a "person of interest" in the case, the newspaper reported.

Authorities said phone records showed Murtaza's mobile phone had been used less than 2 miles from the scene of the killings an hour before the attack. He had told investigators he was not in the city that day, the Times said.

Copyright ©  2007, by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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