A controlling dad has been jailed after forcing his daughter to sign a “contract” promising she would never get fat.
The estranged children of Rachid Khadla plucked up the courage to reveal the horrific abuse they suffered at the hands of their father at the family home in Windsor, Berks.
The fitness fanatic dad, 56, made his daughter promise “I will never let myself get fat…I will do lots of exercise to make sure I will never get fat….even until I die.”
At his sentencing hearing today, Khadla’s only daughter, Amira, explained she was made to feel worthless and developed an eating disorder following weekly weigh-ins.
The slim veterinary nurse said: “I was made to feel stupid and worthless, I lost my self confidence and developed an eating disorder. Every bit of my life was affected growing up, we did not have a normal life or a happy childhood.”
Khadla was jailed for two-and-a-half years after being convicted of two counts of causing actual bodily harm and three counts of child cruelty after a trial at Reading Crown Court.
During the trial, the judge heard how the tyrant controlled all aspects of family life – withholding access to the internet, mobile phones and house keys.
If his children, Karim, Amira and Hitcham, disobeyed his strict regime, the dictator would punish them, beating them with a wooden spoon, a court heard.
Today, prosecutor Alex Krikler explained that when Amira was aged just nine years, her father threw a children’s plastic chair at her head and in later years strangled his son Hitcham, leaving him gasping for air.
Today, oldest child Karim Khadla took to the witness box to share his experiences of living under the aggressive dictatorship.
The suited father-of-one said: “My first memory was aged five years old, I had a habit of throwing away my lunch at school, as I grew older I realised it was a cry for help.
“My father was not happy when I got home, I suffered my first physical abuse at the hands of my father. I remember my father repeatedly hitting me. He was six foot weighing 16 stone, I was just a small child.
“My most severe beating was my last, he punched me into the side of my head knocking me unconscious. Now I get intimidated when someone shows anger towards me, as if I have PTSD.
“At school I had no friends, I was severely bullied daily, they viewed me as a weirdo. But being bullied was almost enjoyable compared with what I was experiencing at home.
“I was coercively controlled for the first 18 years of my life. As a father myself, I do not understand how someone can gain pleasure from dictating his family’s life.”
In his defence speech barrister Philip Rowlands claimed that the defendant now lived a sad existence having cut all contact with his former family.
“Mr Khadla has had absolutely no contact with his family, in many ways he presents as a sad and unfortunate character, that is the position he finds himself in,” the defence counsel added.
“He is not a man without quality and is not a man without credit which makes it all the sadder that he faces this sentence today.”
Sitting at Reading Crown Court, Judge Kirsty Real called the father-of-three a “bully”.
The judge said: “It is a sad case for everyone involved. The backdrop to these offences was one of fear and silence of your unpredictability and the severity of the consequences.
“Having heard from your wife and children, it is clear what a relief it was to have you removed from the family home. You have ruined their childhood, they lived in a constant state of anxiety, they did have the freedom to form relationships that young people their age were expected to have, because of the oppression you maintained in the family home.
“It was the assault on your son Hitcham that broke that silence. You were a bully and your unwillingness to accept your behaviour will be of no comfort to your family, I hope in due course you change your mind, having had a look inwards at yourself.”
Khadla, of Dedworth Road, Windsor, Berks., was made the subject to an indefinite restraining order against all members of his estranged family.