Badir Al-Nazi – 24 of no fixed abode was found guilty of murdering 20-year-old Mohammed Al-Araimi and wounding his friend following a trial at Inner London Crown Court on Friday, 13 August. He had previously pleaded guilty to possession of a bladed article.
His accomplice, Arseboon Dilbaro – 23 of no fixed abode was found guilty of wounding in relation to the attack on the second man. He was found not guilty of Mohammed’s murder and possession of a bladed article; both men were found not guilty of attempted robbery.
Both men will be sentenced at the same court on 10 September.
The court heard how Mohammed and his friend had met for dinner on the evening of 5 December 2019 in Knightsbridge. Having finished their meal shortly after midnight, both men walked out of the restaurant and down an alleyway between Basil Street and Sloane Street.
Unbeknownst to the pair, Al-Nazi and Dilbaro were lying in wait. Just metres into the alleyway, Al-Nazi and Dilbaro attacked the pair, with Al-Nazi stabbing Mohammed in the chest. Mohammed and his friend, who had also sustained a stab injury, ran from the alley, initially pursued by Al-Nazi.
Mohammed made it as far as Hans Crescent before collapsing. Realising the extent of his injuries, his friend called police and the London Ambulance Service but despite the best efforts of paramedics, Mohammed died at the scene.
An investigation was launched by Homicide detectives from the Met’s Specialist Crime Unit who began the painstaking work of piecing together the events of that night.
Fast-time analysis of the CCTV from the area captured Al-Nazi dropping something just after the attack at the location. An examination of the scene identified a cardboard knife sheath that was recovered.
A cap that was worn by the second victim also contained the DNA from Dilbaro, proving the two had come into contact.
CCTV provided facial images of Al-Nazi and Dilbaro although their identities were not known to police at this time. Both images were publicly circulated and on 8 January 2020 Al-Nazi handed himself into police.
Analysis of his mobile phone enabled officers to establish the identity of Dilbaro who in the intervening time had fled to Egypt. He was arrested on his return to the UK on 14 July 2020.
Both men were subsequently charged.
Detective Inspector James Howarth who led the investigation said:
“I am delighted that Badir Al-Nazi has been found guilty of the murder of Mohammed Al-Araimi and Arseboon Dilbaro for the attack on his friend. While Dilbaro has been found not guilty of murder, the jury found he played a significant part in the attack.
“Mohammed and his friend were two wholly innocent members of the public going about their normal routines when they were needlessly set upon by Al-Nazi and Dilbaro.
“During the trial Al-Nazi tried to tarnish Mohammed’s memory and I am pleased that the jury saw through his pack of lies.
“Both families have been left utterly shocked and devastated by these events and I can only hope these convictions go some way to help them move on with their lives.”