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Croydon rapper was murdered because of feud between his brother and alleged killer, court hears

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AN aspiring rapper was "deliberately executed" because of a feud between his brother and one of the alleged gunmen, the Old Bailey has heard.

Umar Tufail,  25,  was shot in the head as he sat in a car outside his home in Wharncliffe Road, South Norwood, on July 15 last year. 

The shot came from a car driven by Sanchez Thomas and his passenger Kyrone Daley.

The court heard that Thomas, known as Limits, had "history" with Amir Tufail, Umar's younger brother, also known as Rems.

Jurors were told their feud culminated in Amir allegedly stabbing Thomas, a member of Bromley-based gang Squeeze Section, in Tooting in March 2012.

Daley alleges the bad blood led Thomas to kill Umar.

He claims to have been offered a lift by Thomas to his girlfriend's house.

Reading from Daley's defence statement, William Boyce QC, prosecuting, said that while on route, Thomas stopped the car alongside the red Corsa Umar was sitting in, and opened the front passenger window. 

"Thomas repeatedly accused the victim of being Rems, which he denied," said Mr Boyce.

"He reached down below the driver's seat and drew out what transpired to be a firearm, which the defendant (Daley) was completely unaware he had in his possession. 

"When Thomas established that the victim was the brother of Rems he, without any notice, shot him."

Daley accepts that after the killing they drove back to Unity Close, West Norwood, where they both live, before taking a minicab to a house in Fulham. 

He will argue that he "felt pressured" to do so, and is not linked to Squeeze Section.

The court was told that Thomas claims a third person in the car, who asked for a lift earlier in the journey, was the gunman.

Last Tuesday he revealed the identity of the alleged killer for the first time, blaming a member of Croydon's Don't Say Nothing (DSN) gang called Pauser.

The start of the trial was delayed while police searched for the teenager.

They found someone answering the description provided by Thomas, down to his silver tooth,  but discovered from his mobile phone records that he was in Maidstone on the weekend of the killing.

Mr Boyce read the jury a third statement made by Thomas who now claims he was referring to another DSN member called Pauser.

Thomas and Daley, both 19, are charged with murder under joint enterprise. 

Mr Boyce said it was unclear who fired the single shot which killed Umar but they had been "in on it together".

He said: "This was a deliberate execution. You don't shoot someone at very close range in the head unless you intend to kill them. 

"You wouldn't do that unless you are confident the other person was in it with you."

The jury was taken through CCTV footage which showed their journey to the scene and then back to Unity Close. At no point are they seen to pick up a third passenger or is anyone else seen to be in the car. 

The vehicle was seized after the shooting and gunshot residue was discovered on Thomas' top.

On the afternoon he was killed, Umar had driven his family's red Vauxhall Corsa to Tesco and then returned home.

"He then made the regrettable and fateful decision, from his point of view, to pop out again," said Mr Boyce.

Umar went back to the car, started the engine and was shot in the side of the head.

His mother,  Francesca Thompson, left the courtroom in tears on Tuesday as Mr Boyce described how her son had been a "sitting target".

Amir and his friend Stephen Crawford were playing computer games in an upstairs bedroom when they heard what sounded like a gunshot.  They ran out and found Umar slumped over the wheel. 

He was taken to hospital where he died the next day. 

Thomas and Daley deny murder. 

The trial continues.

Croydon rapper was murdered because of feud between his brother and alleged killer, court hears


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