Belfast Telegraph

Kebab shop owner knifed during raid is lucky to be alive

By Anne Madden

A fast food shop owner who was stabbed in the shoulder with his own kebab knife during a robbery said he is “lucky to be alive”,

Sibbir Ahmed was attacked by three men who burst into his kebab and burger outlet — Spiceland on Belfast’s Bradbury Place — on Wednesday evening.

The men grabbed sharp knives from behind the counter and demanded money from the 41-year-old before stabbing him.

Still shaken from the attack, and having spent the night in the Royal Victoria Hospital’s casualty unit, Mr Ahmed said he is considering quitting the takeaway shop.

“I feel very sad,” he said. “I don’t want any more of this hassle. I’m so lucky to have a life today.”

Speaking from the shop yesterday, Mr Ahmed, who had a |dressing on his shoulder and bloodstains on his arm, described the traumatic assault.

“Three men came in around 6.30pm,” he said.

“They came over the counter and took the big knives that we use to cut the kebab meat. They threatened me and asked for money. I held one of the knives down and then another man came from behind me and slapped a knife into my shoulder.

“I put my hand to my shoulder there was a lot of blood.

“The other man put a knife to my neck and said: ‘If you don’t give us the money I’ll kill you.’”

The third man then emptied Mr Ahmed’s pockets and cleaned out the cash till. The robbers made off with hundreds of pounds.

Mr Ahmed employs two part-time staff who witnessed the incident. There were no customers in the shop at the time.

Bouncers at the door of Lavery’s pub opposite the takeaway saw the men running away and called the police.

“The doctors said I was lucky as the knife wound could have cut an artery,” he said.

The businessman, who is originally from Bangladesh, has lived in Belfast for 14 years. This is the second time in the five years he has owned Spiceland that it has been robbed.

A 21-year-old has been arrested and is due to appear at Belfast Magistrates Court this morning.

Mr Ahmed described the three men as aged around 20, 28 and 30 years old.

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