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Favouring her left forearm, on which spots of blood had soaked through the white bandage, the woman stood in the prisoner's box looking crushed, accused of stabbing her own daughter in what police say was an "honour crime."

After her lawyer, Tom Pentefountas, asked to delay the formal laying of charges so his client's psychological fitness for trial could be determined, the woman's husband stood up in the back of the court and shouted to the judge: "Please sir, my wife is innocent!"

He soon began to weep, completing the picture of a family utterly torn asunder by what transpired early Sunday morning.

The 19-year-old daughter remains in hospital with knife wounds to the head, shoulders and arms.

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