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Axe-wielding shop assistant jailed for life for colleague’s murder

Imran Muhammed hacked married father-of-seven Seyed Khan to death.

An axe-wielding shop assistant has been locked up for at least 24 years for a “ferocious” attack on a colleague over fears of being sent back to Pakistan.

Over-stayer Imran Muhammed hacked to death married father-of-seven Seyed Khan, 49, who suspected him of stealing money.

Mr Khan was taken by surprise and suffered at least 12 blows to the head when he turned up for a shift at A-Z Furniture and Carpets in Ilford, east London, on January 24.

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Seyed Khan suffered at least 12 blows to the head (CPS/PA)

Muhammed, 31, then wheeled the body in a shopping trolley from a nearby supermarket and dumped it in undergrowth at Ilford Cemetery, the Old Bailey heard.

He went on to clean up the blood and “coolly and deliberately” call police to report that he had been robbed and slashed with glass on the arm to “spin a false story”, the jury was told.

Mr Khan’s body was found eight days later after a search with a specially trained police dog, and the defendant was arrested in Glasgow.

Muhammed had previous convictions for dishonesty and was an over-stayer in the country, giving him a motive to kill, the court heard.

Jurors were told that, four days before the attack, Muhammed searched the internet for “how to kill a man with a hammer”, with a punch, and “brain injuries”.

The defendant, from Ilford, denied murder, maintaining he was being sexually attacked.

The jury rejected his explanation and convicted him by a majority of 11 to one after 13 hours and 25 minutes.

Mr Khan’s family attended the Old Bailey as Judge Anne Molyneux QC jailed Muhammed for life with a minimum term of 24 years.

He was also sentenced to five years concurrent having admitted perverting the course of justice.

Judge Molyneux said the killing of Mr Khan was “ferocious, brutal and without mercy”.

She told the defendant: “This was a premeditated attack. You are a liar, a manipulator and a thief and had once again been suspected of stealing.

“You attacked him savagely and brutally with the axe.

“You hit him to the head 12 times – the force was so great that you fractured his skull.

“The injury to the back of his hand shows he tried to defend himself. He never stood a chance against you.”

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