Beds, Herts & Bucks

Murder victim's grave digger jailed

A digger driver who dug a grave for a murdered drug dealer on the site of a new road has been jailed for three-and-a-half years.

Kieron O'Brien, 29, of Peasecroft Road, Hemel Hempstead, met killer Wayne Grimes at Manor Farm in Bedfordshire.

The body of Zafar Khaliq was then buried on the site by Grimes, who pleaded guilty to the murder carried out on 10 July 2010.

St Albans Crown Court heard O'Brien later took police to the burial site.

Grimes, 36, of Abbots Langley, Hertfordshire, was last week jailed for life with a minimum sentence of 17 years and 192 days.

'Easily led'

The court heard Grimes worked with Mr Khaliq from August 2009.

But in the weeks before the murder, Mr Khaliq, who did not take drugs, became concerned about Grimes' drug habit and demanded he clean himself up.

The court heard that while they were preparing drugs in Grimes' flat they become involved in an argument and Mr Khaliq was attacked and killed.

Five days later, the body was taken to the new A421 bypass and buried.

The court was told that O'Brien, who had worked for Mr Khaliq in the past, told police: "I am going to tell you the truth. I did no murder. I know where he is and I will show you where is he is buried."

Bozzie Sheffi, defending, said of O'Brien: "He is a hard-working, honest and reliable man. His fault was that he was easily led."

Jailing him Judge Stephen Gullick said: "The body was placed in a hole you dug and you back-filled the hole.

"Your actions obstructed the coroner and covered up the most serious crime. What you did resulted in real grief for the bereaved."

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