BRADFORD: A man on life licence from prison who murdered a Bradford father-to-be because he felt he had “grassed” him up after a crime they had both committed nearly a decade earlier will serve at least 30 years in jail. Amjad Khan, 31, of New Cross Street, West Bowling, was engaged in an ongoing feud with Imran Khan, 30, who was killed in a drive-by shooting in Round Street, West Bowling, on the evening of June 6. He was found guilty of murder alongside Ismail Khan, 32, of Masham Place, Heaton, yesterday following a five-week trial at Bradford Crown Court. Amjad had previously pleaded guilty to an additional charge of perverting the course of justice. Today, the Recorder of Bradford, Judge Roger Thomas QC, sentenced the pair, who he described as being as “close as brothers”, to life with a minimum term of 30 years. The jury in the trial heard there had been hostility between Amjad and Imran after they were both jailed for a joint offence of kidnap in 2007, but Imran had then subsequently been released from prison more than three years earlier. The court had also heard that it was Ismail who had fired the fatal shot after he and Amjad were among those who pulled up in a car outside Imran’s home, with both firing shots from a semi-automatic pistol. Imran had attacked the car with a baseball bat, with the shot that killed him ricocheting into his forehead as he ran back to his house.
His death was witnessed by his mother, sister, and brother, and occurred shortly before the birth of his daughter. Prosecutor Peter Moulson QC told the court that Amjad had previous convictions for kidnap, including the offence committed with Imran in 2006, and possession of an imitation firearm. He was imprisoned in November 2007 for the protection of the public but released on life licence in September 2014. The court heard Ismail had convictions for the possession of a firearm, robbery, and burglary. On the background between the defendants and the victim, Judge Thomas said Amjad had made gun gestures at Imran on several previous occasions, had been involved in a fight with him in February this year, and had chased him, with Ismail, out of a cafe in the weeks leading up to the shooting. He said: “When you, Amjad Khan, and Imran Khan were arrested for your joint offending it is clear Imran told the truth to the police about not only what he had done but also your part in what had happened. “To your warped way of thinking, he was therefore to be regarded as a ‘grass’, something you regarded as lower than the lowest.”
Referring to Ismail, he said: “You would have shared his (Amjad’s) intensely negative attitude to such a person. On June 6, you Amjad Khan, together with the real and total involvement of Ismail Khan, brought your deep-seated hatred of Imran to its ultimate conclusion by determining to kill him.” He added that the pair had “closed ranks together” after the “revenge” killing, later claiming the “charade” that Ismail had fired the fatal shot by accident or in self-defence. As Judge Thomas thanked the jury for their service yesterday, Ajmad shouted: “I don’t thank you. Remember my name for the rest of your lives. You have ruined my life, my family have to suffer.” He also directed words towards the victim’s family in the public gallery which Mr Moulson later said had been interpreted by a police officer who spoke Punjabi as threats to send people to Imran’s house to rape his mother. Judge Thomas said yesterday: “Your protestations of innocence and expressions of sympathy towards Imran Khan and his family during the trial were wholly false and entirely designed to support your dishonest defences. “Your words, Amjad Khan, from the dock towards Imran Khan’s family demonstrated the ugly truth of your real attitude and the deeply unattractive side of your personality. “Although the killing could properly be said to have been principally driven by you Amjad Khan, it was of course you Ismail Khan who joined in fully and fired the shot which killed Imran.”