Wrong man shot dead in roadside execution

An innocent motorist was shot dead by mistake in a ‘‘roadside execution’’ by �killers out for revenge to settle a spate of tit-for-tat �attacks, the Old Bailey heard last week.

Jules Brown, 25, of Eversleigh Road, Upton Park, east London, was said to be the “eyes and ears’’ of the gang involved in the killing of Michael Ofori, 35.

Mr Ofori was sat in the driver’s seat of his Mercedes car in a quiet street in Catford, southeast London, chatting to his �estranged wife when he was shot in the head.

The gunman, who was on foot, fled to a van and was sped away.

Mr Ofori died in hospital.

Mr Aftab Jafferjee, prosecuting, said the real target had been in the same street, or very close by. ‘‘The intended target of this roadside execution was in fact another person all together,’’ he said. ‘‘To put it bluntly they killed the wrong man.’’

Five men, Brown, Sahid Sule and Nicholas Allon-McVytie, both 23, Nathaniel �Valton, 21, and Kraig Isaacs, 22, are all �accused of involvement in the killing.

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They had intended to shoot �rival Perry Walters, 24, to settle an ongoing dispute with him and his younger brother Demcha Lewis, said Mr Jafferjee.

Isaacs is said to have lured Mr Walters to the area of Oslac Road in Catford in June last year.

Mr Jafferjee added: “The �reason why Perry Walters was targeted was as a result of a spate of tit-for-tat shootings between rival factions that had �commenced not long ago.

‘‘Walters and his brother in one camp and, if not all of these defendants, certainly some of them in another camp, and both sides with ready access to firearms.

‘‘Walters may have had other enemies but in this case it is these men who were his �enemies.’’

Isaacs was said to have ‘‘straddled both camps’’ making him ideally suited to lure Mr Walters to the scene ‘‘under the benign guise of drug-taking’’.

Mr Jafferjee said Mr Walters had no reason to suspect he was �being tricked and he ended up ‘‘in the area and very nearby, if not in the same street’’ as Mr Ofori. He was talking to his wife about a holiday she was due to go on to Ghana within days.

‘‘As they chatted a man �approached on foot and gunned him down while he was still sat in the driver’s seat.’’

Valton is said to have been the hooded gunman. Allon-McVytie is alleged to have whisked him away in the van. Mr Jafferjee said Sule was ��co-ordinating the attack via �mobile phone and Brown was the ‘‘eyes and ears’’ of the gang located in a flat in the street where the shooting took place

Brown, Allon-McVytie, of �Vanguard Street, Deptford, southeast London; Valton, from Deptford; Sule, of no fixed address; and Isaacs, from south London; all deny murder.

The court heard that the men had been mired in an feud in which gunmen from both sides attacked each other in the months leading up to the killing. Sule was shot at but suffered only a graze. Demcha Lewis �suffered a flesh wound.

The trial continues.