Thursday, February 29, 2024

Murder in Mayfair – 2008 Martine Vik Magnussen – Farouk Abdulhak Murder Case; BBC Documentary Just Creates More Questions

Matthew Steeples suggests the BBC’s ‘Murder in Mayfair’ provides the family of 2008 murder victim Martine Vik Magnussen with no concrete answers and certainly leaves them no closer to justice; cowardly cokehead Farouk Abdulhak should now be dragged to Britain kicking and screaming

Last night’s BBC documentary Murder in Mayfair was somewhat ambitiously billed as a “gamechanger” in some quarters and lauded as likely capable of resulting in billionaire playboy Farouk Abdulhak being “extradited to Britain within a year” for the alleged murder most foul of Martine Vik Magnussen in London on 14th March 2008.


In reality, whilst some will quite rightly argue that the programme’s presenter Nawal Al-Maghafi has brought something new to this tragic story by engaging with the on-the-run in Yemen only suspect in the case via Snapchat, I’d say that sadly she stopped engaging with Abdulhak at just the wrong moment and should have gone further.


In what was described to me afterwards as “teen drama stupidity presentation with all that Snapchatting” and a presentation that “cracked the nut open, but didn’t follow through and get a conclusion” by two beady eyed viewers with knowledge of the case, Al-Maghafi produced a documentary that The Sun’s Katy Docherty rightly pointed out “left more questions than answers.”


During the show, Abdulhak – the son of a deceased business tycoon named in the Panama Papers nicknamed ‘The King of Sugar’ and a rat himself prone to vulgarly using the moniker ‘DP’ because of his penchant for consuming vast amounts of Dom Perignon champagne – was shown to engage with Al-Maghafi and shared remarks that included:


  • “I don’t know what happened, it’s all a blur.”
  • “I have flashbacks every once in a while.”
  • “If I smell a certain female perfume, I feel uncomfortable.”
  • “I deeply regret the unfortunate accident that happened. I regret coming here [Yemen]. Should have stayed and paid the piper.”
  • “It was just an accident. Nothing nefarious.”
  • “Like told you, just a sex accident gone wrong.”
  • “No one knows because I could barely piece together what happened.”


He subsequently added that he blamed cocaine for what occurred and added: “Trust me I’m legally f**ked… Leaving the country and the body was moved.” Asked: “Why did you move the body?” by Al-Maghafi, Abdulhak cryptically answered in a very convenient “recollections may vary” style: “I don’t remember.”


Going further this spoilt brat former Regent’s Business School (RBS) pupil – who supposedly now spends his days playing on the Internet with just two bodyguards as ‘friends’ – arrogantly tried to justify his actions. He claimed he had not returned to Britain because:


“I don’t think justice will be served. I find that the criminal justice system there is heavily biased.”


“I think they will want to make an example of me, being the son of an Arab. Being a rich son.”


“I don’t know what answers they want to get. Nothing is going to bring their daughter back. There’s nothing that’s going to change what happened.”


Speaking to the presenter – who sadly missed an opportunity to delve deeper because she rather pathetically didn’t seem to feel comfortable doing such – subsequently, the victim’s father Odd Petter Magnussen shared that he had been offered £41 million ($50 million, €46 million or درهم184 million) to drop the case and “move on.” This courageous man remarked that he had rejected that and told Farouk Abdulhak: “You cannot hide forever.”


Today on Twitter, Matthew Steeples asked: “Today after airing of @BBCNawal’s ‘Murder in Mayfair’ documentary on @BBCTwo last night about the 2008 slaying of Martine Vik Magnussen by alleged fugitive from justice Farouk Abdulhak, I ask: “Shouldn’t the presenter have gone further in her questioning?” As of 13:30am on Wednesday 29th March 2023, the majority of answers favoured the answer: “She was muzzled by the BBC.”
Nawal Al-Maghafi Odd Petter Magnussen
Nawal Al-Maghafi with Odd Petter Magnussen (left) and the latter speaking at a conference about his late, murdered daughter.
Snapchat message exchange Farouk Abdulhak Nawal Al-Maghafi 1(1)
Snapchat seems to be one of the ways that fugitive from justice Farouk Abdulhak keeps himself entertained whilst evading the British courts; the first in the series of messages between him and Nawal Al-Maghafi.
Snapchat message exchange Farouk AbdulhSnapchat message exchange Farouk Abdulhak Nawal Al-Maghafi 2(1)ak Nawal Al-Maghafi 2(1)
Further missives reveal the arrogance of this son of a deceased billionaire.

Elsewhere, in a post on Facebook on 18th December 2022 on the ‘Justice for Martine Vik Magnussen’ group but something not examined in any real depth in Murder in Mayfair unfortunately, it was stated:


“On 7th December 2022, the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that on 19th November Foreign Minister Anniken Huitfeldt had a conversation with Foreign Minister Ahmed bin Mubarak in the Yemeni government-in-exile about Martine’s case.”


“Ahmed bin Mubarak confirmed that he had sent a letter to the Ministry of Interior for the authorities to do what they could to arrest Farouk Abdulhak. This also means that an arrest warrant has been circulated to the airports in the country. Following the meeting on 19 November, the Norwegian Foreign Service received a verbal note from Yemen’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirming that this has been done.”


“Foreign Minister Bin Mubarak also expressed great sympathy for Martine’s family.”


Going further, in January, lawyer Patrick Lundevall-Unger remarked in a post shared on the same Facebook group:


“The controversial state act by the then Sahle regime to harbouring an Egyptian fugitive wanted for rape and murder, should be corrected by the present authorities in Sanaa.”


“Most of all, however, we appeal to the suspect himself to voluntarily return from his residency in Sanaa to the UK.”


“Potential escape routes, such as going by speed boat from Yemen to Djibouti onwards to family in Ethiopia, will not work in the future.”


“Farouk, I therefore appeal to you to come to your senses and deliver on fundamental justice for Martine and beyond. Without justice in the world, we cannot have peace – the two are intertwined. The same applies to you Farouk! Farouk: you can contribute to justice thereby finding your own peace!”


Mr Lundevall-Unger is bang on the nail; it is time for Farouk Abdulhak to put away the Snapchat and the coke and it is time instead for him to man-up and face the fact that he’ll never be free of this saga until he returns to Britain and finally tells the truth about what happened that fateful night.


Editor’s Note – Unlike as is the case in many publications, this article was NOT sponsored or supported by a third-party. Follow Matthew Steeples on Twitter at @M_Steeples.


Pictured Top – Coldblooded cokehead Farouk Abdulhak pictured in 2022 (left) and innocent victim Martine Vik Magnussen (right).


Anyone with information that may assist in achieving justice for the Vik Magnussen family should telephone the Metropolitan Police on +44 (0) 20 8358 0300 or Crimestoppers anonymously on +44 (0) 800 555 111.


To watch ‘Murder in Mayfair’ on the BBC iPlayer, click here.


To support the Justice for Martine campaign, click here, or join the 71,000 followers on Facebook, here.


A post-mortem examination gave Martine Vik Magnussen’s cause of death as compression to the neck. In November 2010, an inquest recorded a verdict of unlawful killing. On a website seeking justice, her friends paid tribute to her life in a video shared on YouTube that also included a contribution from a Yemeni Nobel Peace Prize winner.
Martine Vik Magnussen (6th February 1985 – 14th March 2008) was last seen leaving the Maddox Club, 3 – 5 Mill Street, Mayfair, London, W1S 2AU with Farouk Abdulhak (born February 1987 and also known as Farooq) around 2am on 14th March 2008. Her body was found in the basement of a residential building at The Armitage Apartments, 222 Great Portland Street, London, W1W 5QR – where he rented a serviced apartment – two days later at 10.30am on 16th March 2008. She had been raped, beaten, strangled and attempts had been made to conceal her body in rubbish and rubble.
Both the suspected rapist-murderer and his innocent, tragic victim were students at Regent’s Business School – known also as ‘RBS’ and a place which frankly should have its lavatorial areas tested daily for cocaine as it’d likely be found to have more on the premises than the Houses of Parliament even.
Martine Vik Magnussen was a bright, attractive 23-year-old lady whose life was so reprehensibly taken from her. The courage and tenacity of her family in campaigning to bring her rapist-killer to justice is to be saluted.
Farouk Abdulhak
Farouk Abdulhak (also known as Farooq Abdulhak) lived a playboy lifestyle in London and no doubt lives in luxury courtesy of his family’s wealth. His alleged victim’s life was cut short when she was just 23 and it is beyond disgraceful that this spoilt tyke has not yet been prepared to assist police as they seek to solve the rape-murder that at occurred in the property where he lived in 2008.
Farouk Abdulhak
The arrogance of this scion of a billionaire is clear. Here is someone who lived off his father and was clearly never taught anything about developing a moral compass or the concepts of right, wrong and taking responsibilities for your own actions.
Items missing from the victim’s body that were with her when she left the Maddox Club but not with her body when it was discovered, according to Scotland Yard, included: Christian Dior earrings, snakeskin shoes, a Marc Jacobs handbag, a Guess watch, a silver costume diamond ring and her jeans (described as blue and of a ‘skinny’ fit).
Shaher Abdulhak
Shaher Abdulhak (1938 – 2020) was a prominent Yemeni businessman and the founder of Shaher Trading. Nicknamed the ‘King of Sugar,’ this “media shy” individual “held a great deal of political influence” and “never granted interviews.” He died in Germany from cancer and is buried in Cairo, Egypt and in the wake of his son being accused of rape and murder in London, quite rightly amongst others Daimler AG ended their relationships with a man who harboured and protected a fugitive alleged killer.
Odd Petter Magnussen
In 2016, it was reported that the victim’s father had “received an offer of the arrangement of Abdulhak being handed over to Interpol on the eighth anniversary of her death in exchange for Norway hosting peace talks when the Yemeni civil war was at its height.” Though this was unsuccessful, Mr Magnussen later remarked: “I found this encouraging. This was a strong message to the suspect that he can no longer rely on the total support of his own people. I hope he is not sleeping so well these days.”
The funeral of Martine Vik Magnussen – a young lady whose life should not have been cut short at 23 and whose rapist-killer must be brought to justice.
Matthew Steeples
Matthew Steeples
A graduate of the London School of Economics, Matthew Steeples is a writer and marketing consultant. He conceived The Steeple Times as a media arena to fill the void between the Mail Online, The Huffington Post and such organs as the New York Social Diary in 2012.


  1. No Farouk Abdulhak you POS, it was not a “sex accident…” whatever that is, “gone wrong”. It was rape and murder. That makes you Farouk Abdulhak a filthy murdering rapist POS!

  2. The woman presenting was a disgrace. She had the open goal and then she didn’t kick the ball in. She could have gone further. The programme really upset me actually. Martine deserves better.

  3. Very well said guys, this Abdulhak sounds like a nasty piece of work.
    I think Petter Magnussen is a very courageous and determined man, although I would have definitely taken the 41 Mill offered. That’s a lot of dosh that could have gone towards bringing this protected little scum bag to justice.
    Failing that, there are also plenty of undesirables willing to do just about anything for a 10th of that, if you get my drift, just saying.


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