One of Britain's most prominent antiques dealers allegedly strangled his 7-year-old daughter at their South London home with a dressing gown cord, a court heard yesterday.

Robert Peters is accused of trying to strangle Sophia, leaving her critically injured at her home in Raynes Park, southwest London, reports the Daily Mail.

Peters, 55, was charged with attempted murder as doctors battled to save his daughter's life in hospital.

The charge is set to be upgraded to murder after Sophia died on November 4, the Old Bailey heard today.

Advertisement

It is understood Sophia's mother, Kittiya Promsat, was not at their million-dollar home at the time.

She later posted a tribute on Facebook saying: "I love you a lot and love you forever sweetheart."

Sophia is just started studying at a boarding school, the Evening Standard reported. Her friends and family are said to be heartbroken.

Three-times-married Peters didn't appear in court for a brief administrative hearing today.

Neighbours said Peters had only to moved the area recently and the property was bought in February for almost £1 million ($1.89m).

A neighbour, who didn't give his name, told MailOnline: "It's tragic. I have spoken to him four or five times and he struck me as a reasonable and decent sort of chap."

Another said: "From the little we found out about him over the time he has been here, he has an antiques business with his brother somewhere.

"I have spoken to him two or three times. He seems a perfectly reasonable guy, a normal guy, but we could not make out what his family arrangements were.

"His car used to disappear, others used to be there, other cars would come and go."

Peters is said to have business assets of around £1.3m. He runs an antiques business with his twin brother Richard in London.

His third sibling, Paul, is also involved in an antiques business in North Yorkshire.