Sabita Thanwani: 19-year-old named as woman murdered at student accommodation in Clerkenwell

Sabita Thanwani
Sabita Thanwani

The victim of a murder in Clerkenwell on Saturday, 20 March, has been named by police

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Police have named the victim of a murder at student accommodation in central London as 19-year-old Sabita Thanwani.

Officers were called to Arbour House, in Sebastian Street, Clerkenwell, at around 5.10am on Saturday to reports that Ms Thanwani, a British national and student, was injured.

Sabita’s family have now issued a statement paying tribute to her.

They say: “Sabita Thanwani was our daughter. Our angel. Her life, that we hoped would be long, was cut tragically short. She was ripped away from those who loved her so very dearly; her mum, dad, brother, grandparents, extended family and friends.

“Sabita was the most caring and loving person we have ever known. She inspired us every day of her precious 19 years of life. Her mission was to help everyone. She was studying psychology at City University to make this happen. Her whole life was ahead of her, a life where her radiant smile and incredible heart could only spread warmth and kindness.

“In her short life, she helped so many. Sabita was pure and did not see bad in anyone, because there was no badness in her own awesome heart. We will never ever stop loving or missing our beautiful, irreplaceable Sabita. The girl that was an angel upon the earth is now an angel in heaven.

“We can only pray that lessons will be learnt and that somehow, there will come a day when girls and women are safe. We will never be able to thank the Metropolitan Police enough for their dedication and tireless work in finding justice for our Sabita. From our hearts, we thank everyone for their love and support.

"We ask that our privacy is respected and as a family we can quietly grieve.”

Maher Maaroufe, 22, has been arrested on suspicion of murder by police investigating the death of Sabita Thanwani.

Maaroufe was arrested by police on Sunday afternoon in the Clerkenwell area of London, Scotland Yard said.

He has been arrested on suspicion of murder and of assault on police and remains in police custody.

Detective Chief Inspector Linda Bradley, who is leading the investigation, said: “I would like to thank everyone for publicising and sharing our appeal to trace Maaroufe.

“Sabita’s family have been updated with this development and continue to be supported by specially trained officers. Our deepest condolences are with them.

“I would ask everyone to respect their privacy at this indescribably devastating time for them as they come to terms with Sabita’s murder.”