Duo jailed for 'staggering' broad daylight knife attack

Custody images of Hanif El-Hafedi and Joshua Lenga

Hanif El-Hafedi, 19, of Holders Hill Drive, Hendon and Joshua Lenga, 20, of Talbot Road, Westminster were jailed for the attack. - Credit: Met Police

Two men have been jailed for a "violent and senseless" gang-related attack in the Maida Vale area.

The court heard how Hanif El-Hafedi and Joshua Lenga, armed with large knives, had taken a taxi to the Shirland Road area around 5.20pm on April 8 this year.

After getting out of the taxi, they made their way into the Amberley Estate, where they spotted a 27-year-old man who they believed was from a rival gang.

El-Hafedi, 19, and Lenga, 20, approached and attacked the man, stabbing him in the shoulder and back.

A group of people came out of the building and chased El-Hafedi and Lenga back to the waiting taxi, which they fled the scene in.

While they were being chased, one of the knives used in the attack was discarded and later handed to police.

The stabbing victim was treated in hospital before being discharged. 

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El-Hafedi and Lenga were arrested over the following days and, during a search of a hotel room in Bayswater that they both used, a second knife was recovered.

During the investigation, detectives built a case that included CCTV footage, forensic evidence and witness testimony.

El-Hafedi, of Holders Hill Drive, Hendon and Lenga, of Talbot Road, Westminster, were sentenced at Southwark Crown Court yesterday (Tuesday, November 16).

They had both pleaded guilty to grievous bodily harm with intent at an earlier hearing at the same court.

El-Hafedi was jailed for five years and Lenga was given four years and six months behind bars.

Detective Constable Louis Prior, of the Met Police Central West command unit, said: “This was a violent and senseless attack that could have had much more serious consequences.

"The disregard both El-Hafedi and Lenga displayed in carrying out this attack in a public place in broad daylight is staggering and displays their conceit in believing that they would get away with it. 

“However, due to the weight of evidence compiled as a result of this diligent investigation, they had little choice but to admit their guilt at court."

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