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VIDEO: Brother of drive-by shooting victim Umar Tufail blames himself in song


THE brother of a rapper murdered in a drive-by shooting has recorded a song in which he blames himself for what happened.

Amir Tufail's feud with rival gangster Sanchez Thomas led his innocent older brother Umar, 25, to be shot in the head.

In an emotional tribute recorded after the murder, Amir, 18, wished he had been shot instead.

He sang: "Tears fall from my eyelids because you died over my ****... I wish it was my wig that got hit."

Thomas and best friend Kyrone Daley, both 19, were jailed for a total of 47 years on Wednesday, after being found guilty of murder following a month-long trial at the Old Bailey.

The court was told that Thomas, known as Limitz, had "history" with Amir, known by the street name Renz and a member of Croydon's Block Cartel gang.

Their feud began when Amir threatened Thomas, a member of rival south London gang Squeeze Section, with a knife in Regina Road, South Norwood, in October 2011.

He then stabbed his rival in the arm during an incident in Tooting in March 2012, in an attack which had fatal consequences for Umar, who was a delivery driver with no involvement in gangs.

Thomas did not seek medical attention or report the attack to the police. Instead he resolved to get even with Amir.

Umar was sitting in his car outside his home in Wharncliffe Road, South Norwood, on July 15 last year when a silver Vauxhall Corsa pulled alongside. Thomas was driving and Daley was sitting in the front passenger seat.

The teenagers gave conflicting accounts of what happened next, but according to Daley, Thomas repeatedly accused Umar of "being Renz".

Even after establishing that the man in the car was not his bitter rival, he pulled out a gun and shot him in the head.

Thomas claimed he had stopped the car to "make peace" with Amir and that a third man, a member of Croydon's Don't Say Nothing (DSN) gang called Pauser, had carried out the killing, a claim Judge Stephen Kramer described as "pure invention".

In the minutes after the killing, Amir told a police officer the bullet had been meant for him, adding: "I have a lot of enemies."

In a video posted on YouTube, which shows him rapping a musical tribute in front of his school friends and teachers, Amir says the tragedy convinced him to change his ways.

"You're the only one who had faith in me changing, so look at the change I'm making," he sings.

"He understood I was young, lost and mistaken. Why did he have to be taken? He wasn't a part of the pavement.

"Take into consideration that he was there when I needed saving."

Sajid Tufail, the boys' father, is convinced Amir is no longer a member of Block Cartel.

"Amir has completely cut his ties with those people and detached himself from that culture," he explained.

"He has learnt a very painful lesson at a high expense. He now needs to show others that they should talk to the police rather than let these things escalate and that there's a way out of this lifestyle."

Amir and his friend Stephen Crawford, 18, were playing computer games in an upstairs bedroom when they heard a gunshot.

Crawford went to the window and saw a grey car drive away. They rushed outside and found Umar slumped over the wheel of his car with a gunshot wound to the side of his head.

Umar was taken to King's College Hospital, in Denmark Hill, but died the following day.

VIDEO: Brother of drive-by shooting victim Umar Tufail blames himself in song

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