Ajmol Alom murdered in Poplar street stabbing

Ajmol Alom
Image caption Ajmol Alom was a keen boxer and had won medals, his family said

A 16-year-old described as a star pupil by his school has been stabbed to death by a gang in east London.

Ajmol Alom and another 16-year-old boy were attacked in Spey Street, Poplar, at about 21:50 BST on Monday.

Both were taken to hospital where Ajmol died. The second boy, who was stabbed through the cheek, remains in hospital.

Detectives said it appeared to be an unprovoked attack. Ajmol's head teacher said he was a "splendid young man" with a bright future.

A 19-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder.

Det Ch Insp Andy Chalmers, from Scotland Yard, said: "Initial indications are that Ajmol was with four friends. They were peaceful, they were conducting conversations at the location.

"They were then confronted by five to six other males who were wearing bandanas and were hooded.

"There appears to have been an unprovoked attack when the victim received his facial injuries and then Ajmol was stabbed."

'No gang link'

Mr Chalmers said Ajmol suffered a serious wound to his upper thigh and police were keeping an open mind as to whether the incident was gang related.

Image caption Police said they were keeping an open mind as to whether the incident was gang related

He added: "Initial indications are that Ajmol is not linked to any gangs and there is no indication at this time that Ajmol or any of his associates with him last night did any act which may have provoked this incident."

Former mayor of Tower Hamlets Doros Ullah said Ajmol "used to pray five times a day" and he had been told the teenager was the victim of mistaken identity.

Mr Ullah said: "He was outside with some man who, we understand, had been in some trouble in the past, and three boys that came around were looking for him, so he was in the wrong place at the wrong time and became the victim."

He added that Ajmol's family were "completely devastated".

'Thoughtful young man'

Chris Dunne, head teacher at Langdon Park School, said Ajmol was awaiting GCSE results and was a "very, very splendid young man".

He said Ajmol was planning to take A-levels before going on to a "very good university" where he had spoken of studying medicine.

"Hardworking, industrious, but also a very caring and thoughtful young man," he said.

"He was very able in all areas, but that didn't mean he didn't work incredibly hard. He came to all the revision classes, he worked flat-out."

The teenager had recently taken part in a conflict resolution project with other young people from Northern Ireland, in which he was "hugely active", Mr Dunne said.

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