London

Sports agent cleared over Blackberry phone murder

Danny O'Shea
Image caption Danny O'Shea died after being stabbed in the neck

A sports agent who worked with Rio Ferdinand and Jay Z has been cleared of murdering an 18-year-old in a revenge attack over a stolen phone.

Danny O'Shea was stabbed in the neck in December 2011 after being chased by a group over the stolen blackberry.

Christopher Nathaniel and seven others were cleared of murder and conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm.

Nugent Rowe, from Pinner, north-west London, was found guilty at the Old Bailey and will be sentenced on Friday.

The court head that Mr O'Shea was stabbed yards from his mother's home in Canning Town, east London, in 2011.

During the trial it was heard that defendant Paul Boadi, 34, had been attacked by up to seven men when his phone was stolen the week before Mr O'Shea's murder.

It was alleged he spoke to his business partner Mr Nathaniel, 35, and arranged to return to the area with another eight men to hunt for those responsible.

In his defence, Rowe, 29, said the intention was to give people a punch and a slap.

During the case it was heard that Mr Nathaniel had previously helped Tony Blair launch an anti-knife crime campaign and founded The Rio Ferdinand Live the Dream Foundation with the footballer.

He also set up the NVA Entertainment group in 2005 and reportedly brokered a deal between England footballer Ashley Cole and rap star Jay Z in 2011, which saw the pair meet in New York to plan the building of a new London restaurant.

The defendants, who were cleared of murder and conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm, are:

  • Christopher Nathaniel and Paul Boadi, of Docklands, east London
  • David Hylton, 47, from Holborn, central London
  • Andrew Johnson, 35, Paul Johnson, 33, both from Harrow, north-west London
  • Ferron Perue, 24, from Birmingham
  • Kevin Richards, 32, from Harlesden, north London
  • Scott Marius, 44, from Clinton Villas, west London.
  • O'Neil Wareham, 30, of Harrow, north-west London was also cleared of conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm

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