England

Abu Hamza son Imran Mostafa jailed over King's Lynn raid

  • 8 November 2012
  • From the section England
Imran Mostafa
Image caption Imran Mostafa had denied robbery and possessing a firearm

The son of Islamic cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri has been jailed for 11 years over an armed raid on a Norfolk jewellers.

Imran Mostafa, 20, from Slough, was convicted with three London men at Norwich Crown Court in September.

Gems worth £70,000 were stolen from the shop in King's Lynn in January.

Jonathan Abdul, 18, from Fulham, was sentenced to 11 years, Ossama Hamed, 19, also of Fulham, to eight years and three months, and Ahmed Ahmed, 20, of Enfield, seven years and four months.

Judge Peter Jacobs said: "This was plainly a terrifying robbery.

"Staff were praying that they would not be shot and they continue to suffer trauma."

Smoke bomb

Mostafa, of Deverills Way, was part of a gang which used a gun and sledgehammer in a "sophisticated and well planned" raid on the Francis Wain store.

A smoke bomb was set off to divert attention and to disguise the gang members, one of whom was caught on CCTV waving a gun.

Mostafa and Abdul had denied robbery and possessing a firearm with intent to commit an offence but Hamed and Ahmed had both admitted the charges.

The court was told Mostafa had been sucked into offending because he had been isolated from mainstream society as parents warned their children to stay away from him.

His barrister Roderick Price said: "In his early childhood he had a very good relationship with his father who, at that time, was not in prison.

"But attempts to socialise outside his home often failed because of who his father was. Friendships proved difficult because children would be told by their parents not to play with him."

Mostafa's father Abu Hamza last month pleaded not guilty to terror charges in a New York court following his extradition from the UK.

He denies charges that he conspired with US nationals to set up a terrorist training camp in the state of Oregon.

'Stupid boy'

Abu Hamza will stand trial next August and will also face charges of abducting tourists in Yemen.

Mostafa dropped out of a civil engineering course at university after attempts to break away from his reputation faltered, the court heard.

Image caption Abu Hamza pleaded not guilty to terror charges in the US last month

Since being remanded in custody over the offence, he has been held in segregation because of the identity of his father.

Prosecutor Ian James said the "violent intrusion" at the jewellers was captured on CCTV and showed one of the robbers waving a gun.

"For those who had the misfortune to be working in the premises it must have been an absolutely terrifying experience," he said.

Abdul will serve his sentence in a young offenders institute. Nicholas Wells, mitigating for Hamed, of Gresswell Street, Fulham, argued the raid had not been well planned.

"He is not set on a criminal future," he added.

Stephen Spence, for Ahmed, of Nags Head Road, Enfield, north London, said his client was not a sophisticated criminal and regretted his actions.

"To quote Captain Mainwaring, 'He's a stupid boy',"

David Bird, for Abdul, of High Street, Fulham, said he had lived a "life of turmoil" moving around various countries after leaving his homeland of Eritrea.

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