Beds, Herts & Bucks

Six people jailed in 'severed thumb' case

Mahmood Ahmad
Image caption Only Mahmood Ahmad's thumb has ever been recovered

Six people involved in the abduction, torture and murder of a restaurant worker from Hertfordshire have been jailed.

Mahmood Ahmad, of Watford, was abducted and murdered by a gang led by his brother-in-law Mohammed Riaz.

St Albans Crown Court heard that only the severed thumb of Mr Ahmad, 40, had been recovered.

He had been kidnapped and tortured to make him reveal the whereabouts of his sister Nahid - Riaz's wife.

The court heard that she had left her husband in 2008 and gone into hiding after he was violent towards her.

The jury was told Riaz, 34, of no fixed address, was behind the murder.

Image caption Mohammed Riaz, the mastermind behind the murder, was jailed for 30 years

During the 10-week trial the jury heard how Mr Ahmad was grabbed as he arrived home after finishing work at a restaurant in Aldgate, London.

Terrible injuries

He was then bundled into the back of a car and driven to a flat in Ilford where terrible injuries were inflicted on him with a knife and bottle.

Riaz was determined to find out where his estranged wife was hiding but Mr Ahmad, of Radlett Road, refused to divulge her whereabouts.

The court heard Riaz, his brother and sister and her boyfriend were all involved in covering up the murder, stripping carpets, wallpaper and furniture in a bid to remove forensic evidence.

Riaz was jailed for 30 years after being convicted of conspiracy to kidnap, conspiracy to falsely imprison and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

His brother Sharif Mohammed, 37, of Vista Drive, Ilford, was convicted of the same charges and jailed for 26 years.

Their sister Sabra Sultana, 36, of Kiwi Terrace, Ilford, was cleared of conspiracy to falsely imprison, but convicted of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and jailed for three years.

Her boyfriend Amirzada Hussain, 37, of Churston Avenue, Plaistow, east London, was cleared of murder but convicted of manslaughter and conspiracy to falsely imprison and jailed for 12 years.

Two teenagers who helped kidnap Mr Ahmad were each jailed for three-and-a-half years.

Faisal Chowdhury, 18, from Newham, east London, and Arnold Yousaf, 19, from Cann Hall Road, east London, were cleared of murder but convicted of conspiracy to kidnap and conspiracy to falsely imprison.

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