Guilty: Two men convicted of savagely murdering their 'friend' in Bow Lock
- Credit: Met Police
The two men who blamed each other for stabbing their "friend" in an alleyway in Bow Lock and leaving him there to die, have both been found guilty of his murder.
The body of Mohammed Aqil Mahdi - a 22-year-old from Camden better known as Aqil - was found by a dog walker in a secluded enclosure behind Springer Court, Navigation Road just after 8am on the morning of November 6, 2021.
Majed Ahmed, 19, of Navigation Road, in Bromley-by-Bow and Muzahid Ali, 22, of Bishops Way, in Cambridge Heath, were found guilty of his murder today (July 7) following a month-long trial at the Old Bailey.
Their co-defendant, Abul Kashem, 29, of Victoria Dock Road, Newham, was acquitted of murder.
Jurors heard that Aqil had spent the previous evening with the three men, and they had all travelled in Mr Kashem's car to Southend.
When they returned to London they parked near Ahmed’s flat in Springer Court at about 2.15pm.
Ahmed claimed he went inside to go to the toilet - but it was claimed by the prosecution that he went inside to pick up a knife.
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About 10 minutes later Aqil was led down a path and cruelly attacked by Ahmed and Ali, who then callously walked away, leaving him to die.
Murder detectives believe more than one knife was used in the attack.
The defendants were caught on CCTV entering the alleyway and leaving, and after the attack both of them called each other.
Ali, tried to flee the country by buying a Eurostar ticket, and sent a message discussing a plan to buy a one-way ticket to Bangladesh - but within three days, officers had arrested both men.
Ahmed and Ali refused to answer questions about their role, and have since tried to blame each other.
Officers from the Met's murder squad were able to prove through CCTV and telephone evidence that both of them had colluded with each other and been involved in Aqil’s savage attack.
Scotland Yard said that their conviction had been secured following a "painstaking" investigation.
DCI Laurence Smith, who led the investigation, said: "Given the defendants’ refusal to explain their role, it is not possible to say exactly what prompted the attack.
“Both Ahmed and Ali, who both pretended to be Aqil’s friends, lured him into an alleyway so he could be stabbed and left for dead.
“I cannot imagine what went through Aqil’s mind in those last few moments, and my, and the team’s thoughts are with his family and friends today.
"They will have to live with this loss for the rest of their lives and, while this result won’t give them the one thing they want – Aqil safely back – I hope the verdict will offer them a shred of comfort.”
Giving evidence, he said he had been shocked when Ahmed produced a knife while the four men were smoking cannabis by the riverside.
Ali also accused Ahmed of inflicting the fatal stab wounds, while Ahmed blamed Ali.
Ahmed had claimed a dispute had erupted between Ali and Aqil about a lost bag containing drug money, as they drove back from Southend together, where it is claimed by the prosecution that the group had gone to pick up drugs.
Both men will be sentenced at the same court on July 14.