Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Naked kidnap victim escaped from car boot in Edinburgh

From left: Arnold Nuta MUKUETO; Glen ELAMO; Hooman SOJOODI Image copyright Police Scotland
Image caption Arnold Mukueto, Glen Elamo and Hooman Sojoodi were part of a gang found guilty of the violent abduction

A naked kidnap victim fought his way out of the boot of a car where a gang was holding him captive as they drove through the streets of Edinburgh.

Emmanuel Chidubem Emmanuel struggled with the kidnappers as they tried to force him back into the BMW X5 in front of shocked passers-by.

At the High Court in Edinburgh, four men were convicted of assaulting and abducting Mr Emmanuel.

Police said it was an "extremely frightening experience" for the victim.

Mr Emmanuel, 27, from Stevenage, Hertfordshire, was punched, kicked, and hit with a blunt weapon during his ordeal on 10 February.

His clothing was cut and he was stripped, blindfolded and trussed up at a house in the Gilmerton area of the capital.

'Frantic and shocking'

The gang accessed his online bank account and took cash from it before putting him in the car.

He was driven through the city streets before he managed to disable the vehicle by pulling out fuses. He fought with his captors after the boot was opened at Buckstone Road.

Julie Arbuckle, 47, a social worker, witnessed the incident, which happened in broad daylight at 12:30, and called the police.

Giving evidence, she said: "They were all kicking and punching him and trying to get him into the car. At one point the naked guy, they had got him in the car but he got out the other door."

She said the incident was "frantic and shocking".

She said the victim kept trying to get away and wriggle from their grasp. "He looked quite injured," she said. "His whole face was swollen."

The social worker said she shouted at the attackers to get off him because the police were coming and they began to flee the scene.

She said Mr Emmanuel came over to her car and said "thank you". She told him the police were on their way.

Mr Emmanuel told the court he was trussed round the hands, legs and body and a bed sheet was wrapped over him and taped down. "I think I was gagged with a sock," he added.

'Extremely frightening'

He was then led from the house and put in the boot of the car but started to try and free himself and got his hands out of the bonds.

Once he managed to get out of the car, he said he took an object from the boot to use as a weapon to ward off his captors.

Hooman Sojoodi, 22, of Enfield, North London, Sanchez Facey, 23, of Edmonton, North London, Glen Elamo, 20, who is serving a prison sentence in England, and Arnold Mukueto, 22, a prisoner, had denied assaulting and abducting Mr Emmanuel.

But forensic evidence from fingerprints and DNA linked them to the BMW and the house where the attack began.

They will be sentenced next month.

After the trial, Det Insp Bruce Coutts said: "This was an extremely frightening experience for the victim and we believe that the men were intent on causing him serious harm.

"We are extremely grateful to the public and our colleagues from other forces who came forward to provide vital information which helped ensure this conviction."

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