Search

Kosovan gunman appeals conviction for murder of Golders Green father in 2008

12:38 10 February 2014

Lundrim Gjikokaj is appealing his murder conviction.

Lundrim Gjikokaj is appealing his murder conviction.

Archant

A man jailed for life over the execution of a friend has launched a bid for freedom in front of the country’s top judge.

Cima Sogojeva was gunned down in his home in Golders GreenCima Sogojeva was gunned down in his home in Golders Green

Lundrim Gjikokaj, 32, was convicted of shooting and stabbing 27-year-old Cima Sogojeva on the doorstep of his flat in Caroline Court, Highfield Road, Golders Green, in 2008.

But the Court of Appeal has heard that the Kosovan national had an alibi, which suggested he was not the killer.

His barrister, Paul Mendelle QC, said the Old Bailey jury which convicted him in October 2012 was not given sufficient help by the trial judge on how to consider the issue.

The prosecution case at trial was that Gjikokaj, of Elms Avenue, Reading, murdered Mr Sogojeva to avoid paying back a debt totalling £250,000.

Caroline Court, where the murder took place. Picture: Nigel Sutton.Caroline Court, where the murder took place. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

He allegedly arrived at his friend’s flat in a fake gesture of goodwill, before killing him.

A post-mortem examination revealed the father-of-one had been shot six times and stabbed in the head and neck with kitchen knives.

But on appeal, Mr Mendelle told the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Thomas, that the murder conviction was “unsafe”.

Gjikokaj had always claimed he was not there when Mr Sogojeva was shot at about 11.12am on October 6, 2008.

CCTV cameras captured images of what may have been his car leaving the area minutes before, while telephone evidence suggested he had been in Hayes, Hillingdon, 30 minutes later.

Mr Mendelle said: “If he was in Hayes making phone calls, it was highly unlikely that he could have been in the flat at 11.12am.

“That would have left him about 21 or 22 minutes for a journey that police timed at 19 minutes with sirens blazing and going through every red light.

“It did not conclusively prove that he wasn’t there, but it was an important part of the alibi and it is something the learned judge should have dealt with.”

He said the jury might have been wrongly led into thinking that the defence had to prove it was Gjikokaj in the car, rather than the prosecution having to show it was not.

Lord Thomas, who heard the appeal with Mr Justice Mitting and Mr Justice Simon last month, reserved his decision until a later date.

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

Sunday, May 1, 2016
Owner Saby Thukral at the opening party of her store in Heath Street

Struggling with the challenge of shopping for her fashion-conscious daughters in the area, a Hampstead Garden Suburb mother has opened up a new children’s shop in Hampstead.

Saturday, April 30, 2016
Claire Meir part of a charity raising money for books for Syrian refugees in Turkey. Photo: Nigel Sutton

A mother was inspired to fundraise to buy books for Syrian children in Turkey after imagining what it would be like if her son was fleeing devastating civil war.

Saturday, April 30, 2016
The primary school pupils enjoyed a range of workshops. Photo: Jacqui Sinnatt

Camden and Islington primary school children enjoyed a taste of creativity away from the classroom at the Primary Careers Fair held at the British Library.

Friday, April 29, 2016
Ray Davies is returning to Hornsey Town Hall

Ray Davies performed one of his first gigs at the iconic venue when he was still at school, before going on to form The Kinks

Friday, April 29, 2016
The coffin arrives for the funeral of David Gest arriving at Golders Green Crematorium in north London.

Mourners have remembered music producer and TV star David Gest at a funeral service in Golders Green.

Friday, April 29, 2016
PC Shane Moulds has been dismissed for misconduct

A Camden police constable has been sacked for punching a member of the public he was arresting and hurling abuse at him, calling him a ‘posh twat’

Friday, April 29, 2016
Big Green Bookshop is raising money for Haringey schools.  Joint owner Tim West  pictured. Photo: Nigel Sutton

Two book owners was sickened when an opportunistic thief stole £600, but their customers were “unbelievably” supportive and in a “tsunami of loveliness” helped them raise more than nine times the amount in donations.

Friday, April 29, 2016
Found dead: David Gest (Picture: Ian West/PA Wire)

The funeral of David Gest is set to take place this afternoon at Golders Green crematorium, according to reports.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Yummy traditional afternoon teas for two

MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Traditional Afternoon Teas for two at a location of your choice! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe