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Gang who killed man for fake designer watch jailed

Father-of-two Emmanuel Odunlami was fatally stabbed when he was celebrating his 32nd birthday.

Image source, Odunlami family
5 hours ago

A gang of robbers has been jailed after they killed a music manager for a fake designer watch.

Emmanuel Odunlami was celebrating his 32nd birthday near St Paul’s Cathedral in central London on 1 May 2022 when he was fatally stabbed.

Jordell Menzies, 27, who was convicted of murder and robbery, was handed a life sentence with a minimum term of 31 years.

Louis Vandrose, 28, Quincy Ffrench, 28, and Kavindu Hettiarachchi, 31, were jailed for manslaughter and robbery.

Vandrose, of Thornton Heath, and Ffrench, of Tottenham, were sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Hettiarachchi, of Harrow, was jailed for 13 years.

During the trial, it was heard security guard Hettiarachchi had spotted Mr Odunlami wearing a fake Patek Philippe Nautilus watch with diamond encrusting which, if genuine, would be worth about £125,000.

Hettiarachchi then tipped off his accomplices who attacked Mr Odunlami after he left Haz restaurant.

Menzies, of Tennyson Road, Brent, stabbed the victim before the robbers made off in a Mercedes car with the watch.

Ahead of the sentencing, Mr Odunlami’s fiancee Rajbir Kaur told BBC London: “The hardest part is that there’s been very little to no remorse and Emmanuel was so vulnerable and innocent.

“He did not deserve to die like that.”

She said she had done her best to protect their two sons, but it had been traumatic for them.

“They miss their dad, they love him and they just didn’t deserve a life without him,” she said.

She added that she still struggled to believe that he would never come home.

“I hope I can make him proud, and do a good job with the boys, and I just hope he’s resting now.”

Handing down the sentences at the Old Bailey, Judge Patrick Field KC said Mr Odunlami was a “successful and devoted father”.

“The grief suffered by those close to this man is profound and palpable,” he said.

“Your loss is immense and I understand that there is no sentence that I can pass that will assuage or even lessen the anguish that you feel.”

A fifth man, Antonios Kfoury, 23, was earlier found guilty of perverting the course of justice and subsequently received an 18-month custodial sentence.

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