‘I feared for my life,’ says man accused of murder

Two on trial for killing young victim who died after estate stabbing

Friday, 7th February 2020 — By Samantha Booth

Cabdullahi Hassan

Cabdullahi Hassan was stabbed fives times before dying in hospital last July

A UNIVERSITY student charged with murder has told a jury he thought he was “going to die” when he was stabbed in St John’s Wood, last year.

Mohammed Mahir Miah, 20, claims he had no prior knowledge that violence could unfold at the Alexandra and Ainsworth estate.

Cabdullahi Hassan, 20, was stabbed fives times outside Ainsworth House before dying in hospital last July. His 20-year-old cousin was also injured but survived.

On trial at the Old Bailey, Mr Miah and Amil Choudhury, 20, both from Maida Vale, deny murder and attempted murder.

Mr Choudhury told the court how a third man, their friend Kamel Hassan, had been “persistent” in asking him to drive to the estate area.

Sitting in the witness box with a crutch, Mr Miah told how he had also gone along and had got out of the car to have a cigarette before the confrontation involving others started nearby.

Mr Miah, a student at University of Kingston, said a man on a bicycle had then come over to him and stabbed him.

“It was very quick and he tried to stab me with this knife,” he said. “I grabbed it with my hand and I froze, I didn’t know what to do.

It was the first time I’ve seen knives get pulled out on me or anyone. I thought, am I going to die now?”

Mr Miah later said he felt a sharp pain in his leg, shouted “get off me” and managed to pick himself up from the floor and get into Mr Choudhury’s car.

Once back in the car, Kamel Hassan joined and Mr Miah said he told driver Mr Choudhury to “get out of here”.

Mr Miah was later arrested in hospital where he had a blood transfusion.

The court has previously heard about an incident earlier in the day where Cabdullahi Hassan was seen to punch a man at South Hampstead train station.

Prosecutor Oliver Glasgow said it was “unclear” why Cabdullahi, a former student at the Harris Academy, had done this.

Mr Miah said Kamel Hassan had told him about this incident before they went out that evening.

While Mr Choudhury, who was studying economics at Brunel university, admits being the driver, he also claims he did not expect violence.

Mr Choudhury said as they drove, Kamel Hassan instructed Mr Choudhury to follow a car at junctions, which eventually led them to the estate.

About Mr Hassan, Mr Choudhury said he felt “betrayed” adding: “I was basically thinking, I did him a favour and he’s put me in this position, my cousin is injured because of him.”

The court has been told Kamel Hassan had left the country the day after the incident and he has not returned.

Mr Miah and Mr Choudhury also face alternative charges of man­slaughter and wounding with intent which they both deny.

The trial continues.

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