Self confessed drug dealer denies shooting Ilford man dead in car during murder trial

Abdifatah Sheikhey. Picture: Met Police

Abdifatah Sheikhey. Picture: Met Police - Credit: Met Police

An Ilford man accused of murdering a man as he sat in a car in Ilford denied involvement and told jurors he watched the incident unfold in front of him.

Three men are jointly charged with murdering Abdi Sheikhey, 19, who was shot five times in Woodlands Road, Ilford on March 21 this year.

At the Old Bailey today, Sami Omar, 21, of Kingston Road, Ilford, denied killing drug dealer Abdi and described the shooting as “terrifying.”

The court heard that Mr Omar, a former Loxford School student, who left school with 14 GCSEs A* to C, aspired to become a professional footballer.

He had previously played for the Under 15s West Ham Academy and decided to not pursue university in favour of playing football full time.

He told the court he turned to drug dealing, when he was 20 years old, after he was made redundant, and initially started selling cannabis to friends.

But by March this year, the jury heard he had progressed to selling crack cocaine and heroin across Redbridge.

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When he was arrested on March 28 in Leyland Court, in Romford, police recovered 133 wraps of crack cocaine and 6 wraps of heroin, at an estimated street cost of £4,600.

At the Old Bailey today, Mr Omar told the court that he hired the flat for £950 a month with a friend who he dealt with, and they used it a space to prepare drugs for sale.

In a video shown to the jury, he watched footage of himself with two friends in Chester Chicken Shop in Ilford Lane, around 9.30pm, on March 20 this year.

After ordering food, they moved to the side of the takeaway to wait to collect it.

On restaurant CCTV, Mr Omar could be seen answering a seven second phone call.

The court heard that this phone call was made by fellow defendant Suleman Mohamed, 20.

Immediately after the call, the trio of men leave the chicken shop without collecting the food they had ordered.

In a video shown to the jury, as the men reached the pavement outside the takeaway, Abdi, who was shot the following day, attacked Mr Omar and his group.

Mr Omar told the jury that he had no prior dispute with Abdi and believed he was targeting his friend “KK”.

He added that there was no arguments relating to drug dealing as Abdi only sold herbal cannabis.

In the footage, Mr Omar can be seen retreating back inside the takeaway with one of the men, where they were followed by Abdi and another man, who was brandishing a brick. The court heard that all four men were holding knives.

He said: “I went to the shop to pick up food for my mother and sister.

“I had no idea that they [Abdi and his friends] were coming.

“I didn’t see him coming and at first I had no idea who he was.

“But once I saw it was him [Abdi], I got a bit more relaxed because I knew who it was.

“I started asking them what they were playing at and they kept shouting and trying to get to my friend.

“I didn’t think they would hurt me as they were saying his name.”

Chairs were thrown by both groups before Abdi and the two men with him left the shop and ran towards Howard Road, Ilford.

Following the incident, Mr Omar said he discussed it with his co-defendants but didn’t bear any ill feeling towards Abdi.

The following night, the three defendants were driving around Ilford, delivering drugs and “chilling”, he told the court.

He claimed that at the time of the shooting, the trio were driving to Gants Hill, in a hired white BMW, in order to sell drugs to a South Woodford resident.

He said: “We were travelling along Woodlands Road, I was sitting in the back of the car on the passengers side.

“It looked like there was a commotion in the middle of the road with two or three people involved.

“They were arguing.

“When we got closer, we saw people running around and there were loud bangs. I heard three bangs. Then a car slammed the brakes and drove off.

“Jordi [co-defendant] did the same and we sped off, I was ducking down in the car and screaming at him to drive as I thought it was gunshots.”

In the dock, he denied murdering Abdi or knowing who the gunman was, adding that he didn’t know who would have had a dispute with Abdi.

Also accused of murder is Mr Mohamed, 20, of Kingston Road, Ilford, and Jordi Kibusi, 20, of Wisteria Close, Ilford.

All three deny the charges and the trial continues.