Afghan man in UK accused of raping and killing girl, 13, ordered back to Austria to stand trial

·3-min read
Sunrise sky with beautiful colors over Donaukanal or Danube Canal, a former arm of Danube river, nowadays a water channel in the city center of Vienna, capital of Austria. The magic hour over Marienbrücke ( Maria's bridge ), Schwedenbrücke ( Sweden bridge ) and Aspenbrücke.  December 4, 2019 - Wien, Austria (Photo by Nicolas Economou/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Rasuili Zubaidullah, 23, allegedly met the victim in a nightlife district along the Danube Canal in Vienna. (Getty)

An Afghan man accused of drugging, raping and strangling a 13-year-old girl has been ordered back to Austria to stand trial after being arrested in the UK.

Rasuili Zubaidullah, 23, is accused of killing teenager Leonie Walner after meeting her in a nightlife district along the Danube Canal in Vienna on 25 June last year.

Her body was found rolled up in a carpet in the city the next day.

The victim is believed to have been taken to a flat where the crimes were committed.

Zubaidullah was arrested in the UK last July following a tip-off from Austrian police after claiming asylum when he arrived on a boat via the Channel.

Appearing in custody from Wandsworth jail in south London for a hearing at Westminster Magistrates' Court, he was told his application to stay in the UK had been refused and he must return to Austria to stand trial.

Zubaidullah boarded a boatload of refugees and claimed asylum in Britain weeks after the victim was found dead.

General picture of the front of Westminster Magistrates Court in Central London where two men appeared in court charged with conspiracy to steal from Barclays.
Rasuili Zubaidullah appeared from custody at Westminster Magistrates' Court. (PA)

He is said to have provided authorities in Kent with a fake name on 18 July last year after successfully crossing the Channel.

He was living at a hostel in Whitechapel, east London, for two weeks before Austrian police tipped off British authorities.

National Extradition Unit officers arrested him on 29 July last year.

It was initially believed Zubaidullah had made his way to Italy before it emerged he had come to the UK.

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Jonathan Swain, prosecuting, told an earlier hearing: "This case relates to a warrant issued by Austrian authorities on 29 July this year.

“This was certified by the National Crime Agency a day later.

"Zubaidullah is suspected of committing two offences on 25 and 26 June last year, which are described as a wilful collaboration with three named people.

"He coerced the alleged victim by force and got her to engage in and acquiesce to sexual intercourse by force.

"He gave her seven ecstasy pills before having vaginal intercourse with her.

"It is said the victim was grabbed and choked until she was unable to breathe and suffocated, and therefore she ultimately died.

"The second charge relates to the fact he had sex with her when she was under 14 years old."

Zubaidullah's lawyer Ben Keith objected to extradition under Section 12A of the Extradition Act 2003, claiming the Austrian authorities had not yet decided to charge Zubiadullah.

District Judge Michael Snow told him: "I am afraid I am going to reject your challenges and, as a result, you must return to Austria to stand trial in respect of these allegations."

Zubaidullah spoke only to confirm he understood proceedings translated to him by a Farsi interpreter. He was remanded into custody.

He has seven days to appeal the ruling, and if he does not, he will be sent back to Austria within 17 days.

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