Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Drug gang man guilty of knife assault in Edinburgh

A 29-year-old man is facing jail after being found guilty of assault by repeatedly striking another Somalian drug gang member with a knife.

The assault to severe injury by Mohamed Farah follows a dispute that also led to three men receiving life sentences in May for the murder of Mohammed Abdi.

Farah, from Brentford, struck Ahmed Ahmed in Edinburgh's Abercorn Crescent.

Sentence was deferred until 14 August for a background report and Farah was remanded in custody.

After a week-long trial at Edinburgh Sheriff Court, the jury took 20 minutes to reach their verdict but added that the assault had been as a result of provocation.

Drug dealers Mohamud Mohamud, Cadil Hussein and Hussein Ali had been given life sentences in May after pleading guilty to the murder of Abdi.

Abdi died after being shot in the chest by bullets from a Mac-10 machine gun following a car chase through Edinburgh. Each will serve a minimum of 25 years.

Car chase

The Sheriff Court jury heard that the gang, dealing in crack cocaine, and operating in Glasgow and Edinburgh, had fallen out over money.

This led to a car chase that ended in Abercorn Crescent in the quiet residential area of Willowbrae in the early hours of 26 May last year.

The Glasgow members of the gang were in two cars. When one of the pursuing cars, a Volkswagen Sharan, crashed into the railings of the local tennis club, Abdi, armed with a metal baseball bat and Farah, with a knife, attacked it.

Abdi smashed the windows of the car and Farah repeatedly stabbed Ahmed. It was then that Abdi was hit by fire from the machine gun from inside the vehicle.

Farah told the jurors: "These people came to Edinburgh from Glasgow and they had guns."

However, fiscal depute Alison McKenzie said: "The only real difference between their group and Mr Abdi's group is they had guns and you didn't."

As for a special defence of self-defence, Ms McKenzie, said: "If he was in fear of his life, why was he approaching the vehicle with a knife in his hand?

'Dangerous weapon'

"He could have run away. He did eventually - to London."

Abdi, she said, had smashed the window of the Sharan while it was stuck in the railings and Farah was stabbing through the window.

"Abdi didn't know they had guns and neither did the accused," she said. "Mr Farah thought he was the person with the most dangerous weapon, but on that day, he got it wrong".

Defence solicitor Leanne McQuillan said that Farah and others were in a Ford Focus and being pursued by the Sharan and a Fiesta.

The Fiesta forced the Focus to a halt and, she said, at that time Farah was going to run away, but the Sharan turned up and there were multiple shots from a revolver and machine gun. The machine gun had jammed.

"At this point, he was just defending himself and his friends," she said. "He was terrified and praying to God. He thought this was going to be his last day on Earth."

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