Damilola Oyedele in Abuja
A British court, Woolwich Crown Court, on Thursday convicted a 24-year-old Nigerian, Mr. Jeffrey Okafor, for the fatal stabbing of another Nigerian, Carl Beatson-Asiedu, in 2009.
According to a statement issued by the British High Commission in Abuja, Okafor, who would be sentenced friday, had fled after he stabbed Asiedu in the heart following an argument. He had sparked a five-year international manhunt.
“Carl was discovered in the back seat of a car suffering from a serious stab wound. Police officers provided first aid as well as calling the London Ambulance Service and London’s Air Ambulance. Doctors tried to save Carl’s life but sadly all medical assistance was unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead,” the statement read.
It added that a forensic examination identified Carl’s DNA on a glove that was handed to the police by Okafor’s girlfriend. “Detectives attended Okafor’s home address in the early hours of 13 August 2009 but he was not there.
Enquiries identified that Okafor went to Barclays Bank and withdrew all of the funds from his bank account. He then travelled to Barking where he stayed in a hotel for three days,” the statement continued.
“On the fourth day, 17th of August 2009, Jeffrey Okafor was captured on CCTV with his brother Junior Okafor at Heathrow Airport. The footage showed the two brothers together prior to swapping clothing and Jeffrey Okafor then leaving the UK using his brother’s passport on an Air France flight to Lagos, Nigeria,” it read.
Detectives, supported by Asiedu’s family offered a reward of £10,000 to trace the fugitive in August 2014.
By this time, Okafor had completed university education in Nigeria and was deployed for the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
“With the help of the Nigeria Police Force and the British High Commission, detectives arrested Okafor on September 23, 2014. He was apprehended at a bank in Warri, Delta State, by Nigerian police officers.
“Okafor was extradited back to the UK and arrived at London Heathrow Airport on November 6, 2014, where he was arrested and charged with Carl’s murder,” the statement said.
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