Sixteen-year-old Turkish Cypriot girl Zehie Helin Reessur, who was murdered in January saw her killer “as a brother”, according to testimonies heard in court on Thursday.

In the latest hearing of the trial of Sefer Bugra Altundag, the Trikomo district court heard the actions of Reessur’s boyfriend Efe Berk Orbay on the night of the murder.

Famagusta policeman Hakan Ozcuremez, who was on duty on the night of the murder, said Orbay and his mother Gulnaz Akbas arrived at the police station at 3:10am on January 25.

Ozcuremez said Orbay told him he had spoken with his girlfriend on the phone at around 1:30am and that she was “with someone she saw as a brother, called Sefer”.

Reessur was reportedly “having fun” during the first phone call, and was “extremely drunk”.

However, when she next called him an hour later, there were audible arguments in the background, and Reessur reportedly only said “he hit me in the nose” before the call ended.

Ozcuremez said Orbay did not know whether Altundag had a car and did not know his telephone number. He also said that he had attempted to call Reessur again but received no answer.

After Orbay and his mother visited the police station, Ozcuremez and another policeman, Emin Ozbilen, visited Reessur’s house in the old town of Famagusta at around 4am, and found it to be empty.

At 7:15am, Ozcuremen was informed by police second lieutenant Dogukan Erdogan that a black Nissan Navara had been seen on the road to the Dheryneia crossing point, and that there were blood stains on the vehicle’s seats.

Erdogan also reported an attempt to destroy clothes by burning them. Ozcuremen said he visited the area in which the car had been sighted and found it facing southwards around 400 metres away from the military base located near the village.

He said “when I went to the vehicle, I saw the engine was left running and the doors were unlocked. When I looked inside the vehicle, I saw there were burnt clothes on the front passenger seat, blood on the seat, and also some tools in the passenger footwell”.

He said photographs were taken of the vehicle and the items found inside taken as evidence, and shortly afterwards, the Famagusta police department was informed by the Trikomo police department that a body had been found.

Following Ozcuremen’s testimony, prosecutor Ayse Kayak requested the case be referred to the High criminal court in Nicosia. The defence said they would not object to the referral.

Judge Sevket Gazi said he would make a decision on whether to refer the case on September 5.