Inmate stabbed to death at Wormwood Scrubs to ‘teach him a lesson’, court told

A prisoner was stabbed to death with a makeshift knife at HMP Wormwood Scrubs to teach him a “lesson”, a court has heard

Khader Saleh, 25, was attacked by fellow inmate Kalifa Dibbassey, 21, after visiting his cell to try to resolve a dispute, jurors were told.

Dibbassey is on trial at the Old Bailey accused of murder alongside Ahmed Khayre, 22, and Enton Marku, 20, who were allegedly recruited to help on January 31.

opening the trial, Oliver Glasgow QC said: “It appears that Khader Saleh had gone to this cell in the hope of trying to resolve a conflict that he had with Kalifa Dibbassey.

“However, he could have had no idea what lay in wait for him.

“Kalifa Dibbassey had armed himself with a makeshift knife for the purpose of attacking Khader Saleh and had gone to the trouble of recruiting help in order that he could carry out his plan.”

Marku was waiting outside the cell and Khayre escorted the victim inside, it is claimed.

Mr Glasgow told jurors: “Once the cell door was shut, Khader Saleh was attacked and stabbed twice.

“He had no chance to defend himself or to strike out at his attackers, which is why the only person to sustain any injury in that cell was Khader Saleh.”

Afterwards, the defendants allegedly set off an alarm before climbing into a neighbouring cell and setting off an alarm there too.

They got away when a prison guard unlocked the cell door moments later, the Old Bailey was told.

Mr Glasgow said the attack appeared to have been sparked by a “minor altercation” in the segregation unit the day before.

He said: “No-one saw what happened but Khader Saleh had sustained an injury to his face and it was evident that a fight had broken out and someone had assaulted him inside the holding cell.”

On the possible motive for the attack, Mr Glasgow said: “Khader Saleh had made a nuisance of himself and he needed to be taught a lesson.”

Jurors heard Dibbassey had admitted the killing but had said he acted in self-defence.

The prosecutor said: “Kalifa Dibbassey was waiting in his cell for Khader Saleh to arrive, he had armed himself with a knife that had been fabricated from a piece of metal.

“He was ready to use that knife the moment the cell door was shut and as soon as he had killed Khader Saleh he ran from the cell and hid in a cell on a completely different level.”

Mr Glasgow said all three men “played their part” in the death at the west London jail and it did not matter who wielded the weapon.

Wormwood Scrubs has an operational capacity of around 1,300 prisoners and at the time of Mr Saleh’s death, there were 1,188 inmates.

All three defendants have denied murder.

Murder Trial: HMP Pentonville. Officers “Did Favours” for Inmates Jury Told

jamalmahmoudPrison officers at a north London jail would regularly do “favours” for prisoners, including smuggling contraband, the widow of a fatally-stabbed inmate has told a court.

New father Jamal Mahmoud, 21, was allegedly attacked by three fellow prisoners in a battle over illicit phones and a knife on G Wing of HMP Pentonville on October 18 last year.

Melissa Modeste, who spoke to her husband in the hours before the attack, told the Old Bailey Mr Mahmoud claimed he could “get let out” of his cell to settle a dispute with a rival faction.

Asked if she found this surprising, Ms Modeste said: “No, because I know what the guards are like there. They let people out, they do favours like bring stuff in.”

The trial has heard how Mr Mahmoud was allegedly killed by three fellow inmates in a battle to control the wing’s “lucrative” contraband route.

Robert Butler, 31, Basana Kimbembi, 35, and Joshua Ratner, 27, deny murder as well as wounding Mr Mahmoud’s associate Mohammed Ali, with intent to cause him grievous bodily harm.

The location of the victim’s cell on the fifth floor of G Wing occupied a prime position, giving him power over the influx of contraband, jurors have heard.

Before his death, he was said to be angry about other inmates bringing in parcels without “cutting him in” on the deal.

Questioning Ms Modeste, Michael Holland QC, defending Kimbembi, suggested: “As far as parcels were concerned, it was his operation. It was the fact they were bringing parcels in without his permission.”

Mr Mahmoud spoke with his wife for around an hour and a half the night before he died, on one of the 15 phone numbers she had for him, the trial heard.

Ms Modeste said: “He wasn’t the happiest. He was being very blunt and I kept asking what was wrong.

“He said he felt violated. He said they pulled a knife on him.”

Ms Modeste said she brought one of Mr Mahmoud’s friends in on a three-way call on the morning of his death to help “calm him down”.

She said: “Jamal was in his cell. He said he was going to get someone to unlock his cell. He was saying something along the lines of ‘I’m not going to let this slide’.

“I told him he shouldn’t do anything and made a threat to him, saying I would never speak to him again.”

 

Emerson Cole, a prison officer on G wing at the time, was warned by an inmate that knives were stashed in a cell the day before the killing.

Mr Cole, now a senior officer, said of the inmate: “He had a concerned look on his face. He said he’d never seen nothing like it before.

“He said: ‘If it don’t kill one of you,’ meaning officers, ‘then it’s going to kill one of us,’ meaning prisoners.”

The following morning, the cell was searched but no blades were found.

Following the attack, Pentonville officers “voted no confidence in the governor” Kevin Reilly, the court heard.

Questioning, Mr Holland said: “The concern was the inquiry would seek to lay blame.Prison staff were concerned management were not going to take responsibility. Staff had made complaints they were overwhelmed.

“Matters were made worse when two prisoners escaped just over a fortnight later – it was like something out of The Great Escape, wasn’t it?”

James Whitlock and Matthew Baker went on the run in November last year after breaking out of the Victorian prison by sawing through a metal bar, clambering over the roof and swinging round a CCTV pole on a bed sheet.

The trial continues.

Alan Charlton ‘body in carpet’ conviction sent to appeal

Alan Charlton
Alan Charlton

A man convicted of murdering a Cardiff teenager whose remains were found wrapped in carpet 25 years ago has had his case sent to the Court of Appeal.

Alan Charlton is serving a life sentence for killing 15-year-old Karen Price, who disappeared from a children’s home in 1981.

He was convicted in 1991 and an appeal failed three years later.

But it has now been referred because of concerns over techniques used by South Wales Police to investigate the case.

‘Body in the carpet’

The Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) said there had been concerns about the alleged “oppressive handling” of key witnesses by officers and alleged breaches of police regulations.

It became known as the “body in the carpet” case after the teenager’s remains were discovered wrapped in carpet in a shallow grave on 7 December 1989.

A plastic bag had been placed over her head and her arms had been tied behind her back.

The body was found by workmen in the garden of a property in Fitzhamon Embankment, Cardiff, eight years after Karen had disappeared.

After failed attempts to identify her body, Richard Neave, of Manchester University, created a clay facial reconstruction of the skull.

Karen was identified following the reconstruction and DNA samples taken from her parents and the skeletal remains.

Charlton, from Bridgwater, Somerset, was living at Fitzhamon Embankment at the time the teenager went missing.

He was convicted on 26 February 1991 at Cardiff Crown Court and sentenced to life in prison with a minimum of 15 years, but he remains in jail more than 20 years later.

In 1994, Charlton’s appeal was heard alongside that of co-defendant Idris Ali, from Birchgrove in Cardiff, who was Karen’s pimp.

The court dismissed Charlton’s appeal but quashed Ali’s conviction and ordered a retrial, where he admitted manslaughter and was released from prison.

Notorious cases

But following a lengthy investigation, the CCRC has now referred Charlton’s conviction to the Court of Appeal as it considers there is “a real possibility that the court will quash the conviction”.

CCRC has said a number of officers involved in the case also investigated two notorious cases that resulted in miscarriages of justice – the murders of Lynette White and Philip Saunders.

The CCRC has also told the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary about its concerns.

IPCC commissioner Jan Williams said it raised important questions about the conduct of South Wales Police during the 1980s and 1990s.

“In the light of questions around other similar cases, this clearly raises serious issues for public confidence in the integrity of the force at that time,” she said.

“We therefore expect South Wales Police to review all the evidence from the CCRC, make a decision, and record and refer any conduct issues that may come to light and which may then require IPCC action.”

Following news of the appeal, South Wales Police Chief Constable Peter Vaughan said: “We note that the Criminal Cases Review Commission has referred the conviction of Alan Charlton for the murder of Karen Price to the Court of Appeal.

“In light of this referral we must now allow the judicial process to take its course and therefore cannot comment further at this stage.”

 

27 Years For Boss Killer

Parvaiz Iqbal - stabbed 51 times
Parvaiz Iqbal – stabbed 51 times

A shop worker has been jailed for a minimum of 27 years for murdering his “friendly and popular” boss in a frenzied knife attack in South Yorkshire.

Naeem Mehmood, 27, stabbed Parvaiz Iqbal 51 times in the freezer room of his butcher’s store and supermarket in Rotherham in October last year.

Mr Iqbal, 40, was found with a 7in (18cm) knife stuck almost up to the hilt in his chest, a judge at Sheffield Crown Court heard.

Another shop worker who came to his boss’s aid was stabbed in the stomach but survived the ordeal.

Prosecutor Peter Moulson QC described how, after the attack at the Bismallah Food Store, Mehmood went on a 10-minute rampage, smashing windows and threatening members of the public with a huge machete he picked up after leaving the murder weapon embedded in Mr Iqbal’s chest.

Mr Moulson said the defendant shouted “Don’t come outside or I will gut you up” in Punjabi to strangers as passers-by fled in terror.

He was eventually arrested after he was confronted by an unarmed police officer, Chief Inspector Ian Womersley.

Mr Moulson said the attack on Mr Iqbal was “unprovoked, sustained and determined”.

Mehmood was jailed for life by Mr Justice Males who ordered he serve a minimum of 27 years.

Earlier, Mehmood had pleaded guilty to murdering Mr Iqbal and causing Saied Husseine grievous bodily harm with inten

The judge said: “This was a brutal, sustained and unprovoked attack, beginning with a cowardly stab in the back by a lethal weapon.”

He told Mehmood: “All murder is very serious but the seriousness of this offence was particularly high.

“It involved a savage and ferocious attack with a lethal weapon, premeditation and gratuitous violence continuing well after Mr Iqbal was bleeding to death on the floor.

“There was also a deliberate and murderous attack on Mr Husseine, which could very easily have caused his death. Your conduct as you left the store and proceeded along the road, terrifying and threatening innocent members of the public as you went, was a serious aggravating factor.”

The judge said father-of-three Mr Iqbal was “a friendly and popular member of the community who was well-liked and respected by his employees, his customers and all who knew him”.

He noted how Mehmood terrified members of the public as he made “bloodthirsty threats” in the street while brandishing the 10in (25.5cm) machete above his head.

The court heard that he smashed up glass displays in Mr Iqbal’s shop, swearing and shouting as young children looked on.

Mehmood then smashed up a series of cars outside the store before breaking the windows of a barber’s shop, showering customers with glass and threatening the owner.

The judge said: “The aftermath, as you left the store and rampaged down the road in broad daylight for about 10 minutes, leaving a trail of destruction behind you, caused real and understandable fear to many members of the public.”

But he said: “Why you acted as you did is not apparent.”

The court heard that Mehmood, who came to Britain from Pakistan in May 2011, started work at the shop in June 2013 but went on sick leave in August after part of his finger was chopped off in a machine at the store.

The judge said the defendant had returned to work the day before he attacked his boss, on October 15.

He said: “It may be that you were reacting to what you perceived, with no justification at all, as some kind of slight or that you harboured some kind of grudge.

“But, in any event, there is not the slightest excuse for what you did.”

The judge said there was also no evidence of Mehmood suffering from any kind of mental disorder.

Passing sentence, he told Mehmood: “It is apparent from your conduct in this case that you are a very dangerous man and present a considerable risk to public safety.”

The judge also commended the actions of Mr Womersley, who confronted Mehmood in the car park of a Tesco supermarket. The unarmed officer approached the bloodstained defendant, who was still brandishing the machete, and convinced him to put down the weapon.

Outside court, Detective Inspector Kevin Brown, from South Yorkshire Police, said Mr Womersely “put his life at risk” to disarm Mehmood, who appeared in the dock surrounded by prison officers.

“There’s nothing really that’s come out in our investigation to explain why,” the officer said.

Mr Brown said Mehmood originally suggested that he had been disrespected by Mr Iqbal but more than a dozen of his other employees talked of him as being the “perfect boss” when interviewed by detectives.

Mehmood, of Herringthorpe Valley Road, Rotherham, was given a 10-year prison sentence for the attack on Mr Husseine, which the judge ordered to run concurrently.

Cregan to die in jail

cregan

One-eyed police killer Dale Cregan is set to die in prison with a whole life sentence for murdering four people after his long-running trial came to an end today.

Cregan, 30, had previously pleaded guilty during the trial to killing policewomen Nicola Hughes, 23, and Fiona Bone, 32, and father and son David Short, 46, and Mark Short, 23, last year.

He also admitted the attempted murders of three others and causing an explosion with a hand-grenade.

A jury at Preston Crown Court today found him not guilty of one remaining count of attempted murder involving a grenade attack on Sharon Hark, which he denied.

Cregan went on the run days before he killed David Short last August after he gunned down his son, Mark, in a pub in Droylsden, Greater Manchester, three months earlier.

The manhunt reached a ghastly conclusion on September 18 when he lured the unarmed constables with a bogus 999 call to a house in Abbey Gardens in Hattersley.

He gave a false name as he reported a concrete slab had been thrown through a back window.

His last comment to the call handler as he was told officers were on the way was: “I’ll be waiting.”

He opened the front door as they walked up the front garden path and immediately shot them in the chest with a Glock handgun.

Cregan shot Pc Hughes eight times, including three strikes to the head as she lay on the ground.

Pc Bone was hit up to eight times after she managed to draw and fire her Taser as Cregan discharged 32 bullets in total in barely half a minute.

He then left his “calling card” of a military grenade which he threw it on the path where the two officers lay.

The killer then dropped his gun and drove a short distance to Hyde police station where he calmly walked up to the counter clerk and said: “I’m wanted by the police and I’ve just done two coppers.”

Cregan put his arms out to be handcuffed and said he was there to hand himself in.

He then told an officer: “I dropped the gun at the scene and I’ve murdered two police officers. You were hounding my family so I took it out on yous.”

On May 25 last year a balaclava-clad Cregan stepped into the Cotton Tree pub in Droylsden and shot Mark Short who died in the arms of his father David.

On August 10, Cregan targeted David Short outside his home in Clayton, Greater Manchester as he unloaded furniture from his car.

He chased him through and out of his house and shot him numerous times before a grenade was thrown at him with “devastating consequences” for his torso – the first time a military grenade had been deployed in the country in this way.

Cregan was on trial with nine other men who faced allegations concerning the deaths of either David or Mark Short.

The first lot of verdicts were delivered in silence in the packed courtroom save for some stiffled gasps as not guilty verdicts were returned on some counts.

Fiona Bone’s sister, Vicky Bone shook her head and her father Paul Bone leaned back in his seat.

David Short’s wife Michelle Kelly also shook her head, sat beside her other members of her family wiped away tears.

Verdicts were also returned on the nine other defendants.

Leon Atkinson, 35, from Ashton-under-Lyne, Ryan Hadfield, 29, from Droylsden, and Matthew James, 33, from Clayton, were cleared of the murder of Mark Short in the Cotton Tree pub and the attempted murders of three others in the pub.

Luke Livesey, 28, from Hattersley, and Damian Gorman, 38, from Glossop, were found guilty of those charges

Anthony Wilkinson, 34, from Beswick, pleaded guilty during the trial to murdering David Short and possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life. He was cleared of one count of the attempted murder of Mrs Hark on the same day and cleared of causing an explosion with a hand grenade.

Francis Dixon, 38, from Stalybridge, was acquitted of the murder of David Short, the attempted murder of Mrs Hark and causing an explosion with a hand grenade.

Jermaine Ward, 24, was found guilty of the murder of David Short but cleared of the attempted murder of Mrs Hark and causing an explosion with a hand grenade.

Mohammed Ali, 32, from Chadderton, was found guilty of assisting an offender.

The Crown had alleged that last summer’s violence was sparked by a “long-standing feud” between two rival Manchester families – the Shorts and the Atkinsons.

The Cotton Tree shooting was said to have been ordered by Atkinson and carried out by Cregan with the help of others.

Proceedings were adjourned until 2.15pm by Mr Justice Holroyde when he will hear mitigation.

Sentencing may follow today.

Cregan smiled and shook hands with the other defendants after the verdicts. His co-accused Wilkinson looked directly at the public gallery where the victims’ families were seated, with a broad smile on his face.

At 1.10pm, on the 77th day of the trial, and on the sixth day of deliberations, the jury came back into court with unanimous verdicts on all counts, but the defendants were ordered to remain seated as the verdicts were given.

Atkinson, the man accused of organising the initial murder, looked at the floor and put a hand on his head as he was cleared of all charges.

Dixon shouted “Yes!” as he was cleared. Ward, sitting behind him, burst into tears.

As Cregan was cleared of the remaining count he faced, there was a shout of “Yeah!” from the back of the dock and Cregan turned around with a smile.

Trial judge Mr Justice Holroyde QC told the jury that matters may be concluded today, with the convicted defendants sentenced, later this afternoon, subject to legal discussions.

Roderick Carus QC, defending Atkinson, asked for his client to be discharged, along with those of the other defendants cleared of all charges – Hadfield, James, and Dixon.

Dixon is on a life licence for his past serious convictions, which the jury was not told about as they were ruled inadmissible.

Cregan shook hands with Wilkinson and Ali as they were taken down past him in the dock.

Some of the senior police detectives looked grim-faced as they left court.

Mark Leech editor of Converse the national newspaper for prisoners said Cregan typified the kind of individual that deserved to die in jail.

“So often we hear of prison sentences being handed out to those who could easily be dealt with in the community – Cregan represents the kind of dangerous individual who belongs at the extreme far end of that offending scale and rightly he should die in jail.

“All those he murdered had a right to life, they each had loved ones and all of them had a right to a future – the two police officers he murdered ironically came to what they thought was his aid and he butchered them; he deserves to die in jail.”