Ilford businessman murderer and accomplice have appeals refused
PUBLISHED: 11:26 03 December 2014 | UPDATED: 11:26 03 December 2014
Two men who were jailed over the ‘senseless’ killing of a businessman as he tried to stop the theft of his car deserved every day of their jail terms, top judges ruled.
Harjinder Singh Bhurji, 32, of Highbury Gardens, Ilford was stabbed through the heart by car thief and killer, Rory Gordon, in September 2011.
Gordon, 23, of Heathfield Park Drive, Chadwell Heath, was convicted of murder in May and jailed for at least 30 years.
An accomplice, Jae’don Ashley Fearon, 21, of Chingford, got 13 years for manslaughter.
On Tuesday, the Court of Appeal, led by the lord chief justice Lord Thomas, ruled that the sentences were justified for the killing.
The court heard Gordon had enlisted Fearon for his help in scouring the streets for a Mercedes to steal.
Mr Bhurji was parked in Stoneleigh Road, Clayhall, when he was targeted, Gordon plunging a knife into his chest during the carjacking.
Fearon was parked nearby and his phone was connected to Gordon’s throughout the incident, the court heard.
Lawyers for Gordon on Tuesday argued that the 30-year term was too tough.
Giving judgment, Mrs Justice Lang, sitting with Lord Thomas and Mr Justice Edis, said the Old Bailey judge had balanced mitigating and aggravating factors.
“Gordon was deliberately threatening an innocent, unarmed man with a knife at night in a public place in order to steal a car,” she said.
“He then stabbed his victim in the chest, which he must have known was likely to cause serious injury.
“We have come to the conclusion that the sentence was neither manifestly excessive, nor wrong in principle.”
Upholding Fearon’s term, she said: ‘The judge was entitled to conclude that Fearon took an active and important part in the crime.”
Both appeals were refused.
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