Not guilty: Ilford man acquitted of fatal stabbing of drug addict
PUBLISHED: 14:56 16 April 2018 | UPDATED: 10:57 17 April 2018
A 23-year old Ilford man accused of murder has been acquitted, while a 21-year-old drug dealer who pressured other defendants not to “snitch” has been convicted of murder.
Cedric Kyiago, with addresses in Manor Park, Newham and Daventry Road, Romford has been found guilty of fatally stabbing 28-year-old Liam Harman on July 11, 2017 in Straight Road, Harold Hill.
After six weeks of hearing evidence it took the jury three days to reach a guilty verdict for Kyiago at The Old Bailey on Monday, April 16.
Nathan Charles, 22 of Lowbrook Road, Ilford, Kamal Hamilton-Albert, 21, from Highfield Road in Woodford Green and Gleneson Mark, 23, from Whitta Road, Manor Park in Newham were also accused of the crime, but were found not guilty.
Liam had been stealing drugs from local drug dealers in the area, and therefore had reason to be scared on the day of his murder.
He received a threatening message from the drug dealer known as Two Point, that read, “You’re a dead man.”
Liam was stabbed 10 times and the knife had been driven with enough force to break two of Liam’s rib bones.
Judge Wendy Joseph QC told jurors that if they believed any one of the defendants stabbed Liam, or if they were present in the communal area in which he was attacked, or if they thought the defendant took part in organising the stabbing, then they were guilty of murder.
Kyiago previously told the court that he was not the drug dealer known as Two Point, and that he had not been present in the Harold Hill area at the time of Liam’s death.
Instead he claimed to be at his girlfriend’s home in Romford, while Mr Hamilton-Albert, Mr Mark and Mr Charles travelled to the flats in Harold Hill to complete a drug deal.
Midway through the trial, Hamilton-Albert’s defence lawyer, Benjamin Aina, told the court that Kyiago had indeed joined the three men in travelling to Straight Road.
Mr Hamilton-Albert said that after leaving Kyiago’s girlfriend’s home that afternoon, the next time they saw Kyiago was when he emerged from the flats shouting, “run”.
The day after Liam’s murder, the four men met in Nandos, where Mr Hamilton-Albert said Kyiago confessed to stabbing Liam.
“[Kyiago] told the group that Liam had a knife, he had tried to attack [Kyiago] and that was how he came to stab him up,” said Mr Aina.
Mr Hamilton-Albert said that Kyiago had been pressuring him not to “snitch” on him, but that he reached a breaking point on the weekend of March 17.
Liam’s family said: “As a family, we are heartbroken that Liam was taken from us, leaving his two young boys without their daddy.
“The impact this has had upon us is difficult to describe.
“Nothing will ever bring Liam back and this has left a permanent hole in the lives of all of us who loved him.”
Detective Sergeant DS Brett Hagen from the Homicide and Major Crime Command added: “The scene that faced officers and witnesses that night was truly dreadful and I am glad that the instigator of this brutal murder, Cedric Kyiago, has been brought to account.
“Kyiago is a habitual criminal who was on prison licence for offences of drug dealing.
“He now faces a very long term of imprisonment and I am sure the streets of London will be a safer place because of it.”
Kyiago is due to be sentenced at the Old Bailey on April 27.