October 30 2014 Latest news:
Kay Atwal, Chief Reporter
Tuesday, June 24, 2014
The trial of three teenagers, accused of the murder of a market trader, has begun at the Old Bailey today.
The three, who cannot be named for legal reasons, are charged with the murder of Rashid Naeem, 29, on February 18 this year.
Mr Naeem was stabbed on February 16 at his market stall at Queens Market, Green Street, Forest Gate and died two days later.
One of the three, a 15-year-old, is also charged with having a knife at Queen’s Market on the same date.
Sean Larkin, prosecuting, told the jury that Rashid ran the stall with his brother on Sundays.
He said that on February 16, “at about 2.40pm, they were working on their stall and the three defendants walked to the stall and started fiddling about with some of the objects.
“The brothers got the impression that something may happen and Rashid’s brother moved phones into a display box.”
The other 15-year-old asked them if they were scared. He took a watch and ran off.
Another defendant took a ladies’ watch and started to walk away, but when Rashid’s brother told him to bring it back the watch was returned.
Although the three teenagers left the stall, they returned within a few minutes and headed straight for the Naeems’ stall.
Mr Larkin told the jury the entire incident was captured on CCTV and shows the two brothers walking towards the three defendants.
He said: “[The second 15-year-old] reaches down towards his ankle area and gets out a knife he had partially concealed by his jacket.
“[The first 15-year-old] gets his hand out of his pocket and also produces a knife.
“The two brothers are trying to get their watch back, they are unarmed and they go over and ask for the watch back.
“There is a struggle in the course of which [the second 15-year-old] grabbed hold of the deceased and in the course of which the deceased was stabbed in the chest.”
The other defendant, a 16-year-old, joined in the struggle, pushing Rashid to the ground. The first 15-year-old still had the knife but he moved away.
Police officers and ambulance crews arrived at the market and police officers viewed the CCTV footage.
Then, an hour and a half later as an officer was leaving Queen’s Market, he saw the three defendants walking towards the market. He recognised them from the CCTV footage and gave chase.
During the chase, a knife was discarded in a doorway bearing the DNA of the first 15-year-old. Mr Larkin said the knife used to stab Rashid was never recovered.
The hearing continues.