Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Homophobic teen thugs who lured gay men on Grindr then beat and robbed them are jailed for more than 10 years

  • Mohammed Khan, Qaasim Ahmad and Muhammad Umar, set up fake profiles
  • The trio tricked four men into meeting them in Bordesley Green, Birmingham 
  • When the victims turned up for their dates the men were forced onto wasteland
Three homophobic thugs who lured gay men onto dates using Grindr then beat and robbed them have been jailed for more than 10 years each after one of the victim's blood was found on a coat.
Mohammed Sohail Khan, Qaasim Ahmad and Muhammad Umar, all 18, set up fake profiles on the app and posed as gay men wanting a date.
Between January and March this year the trio tricked four men into meeting them in Bordesley Green, Birmingham.
When the victims turned up for their dates the men were then forced onto wasteland where they were attacked and robbed.
Qaasim Ahmad
Mohammed Sohail Khan
Qaasim Ahmad and Mohammed Sohail Khan set up fake profiles on the app and posed as gay men wanting a date
The thugs also humiliated their victims by spitting on them and shouting homophobic comments at them while one had a screwdriver held up against his eyeball.
The first attack happened on January 5 and three further reports of attacks were made on March 18, 24 and 29, sparking a major police manhunt.
But the gang were nailed after one of the victims told police he was spat on during his terrifying ordeal. The forensic tests on his coat provided a DNA match to Umar.
He was arrested in Bordesley Green along with two other teens, who were later released without charge.
Khan and Ahmad were quickly identified as suspects and were arrested at their homes on March 30.
Khan, of Hay Mills, and Umar, of Bordesley Green, admitted conspiracy to burgle and to rob and false imprisonment.
DNA was found on this Canada Goose jacket (left) was presented at trial
Muhammed Umar
DNA was found on this Canada Goose jacket (left) was presented at trial. Muhammed Umar (right) has been jailed for 11 years, three months
Ahmad, of Small Heath, Birmingham, was found guilty of all three crimes following a 13-day trial.
On Wednesday they were jailed for a total of 37 years and 11 months at Birmingham Crown Court.
Ahmad and Khan were each jailed for 13 years and four months while Umar was sentenced to 11 years and three months in prison.
In a victim impact statement, one of the victims said: 'Since my attack the impact of what happened has taken many forms, first was the shock of being knocked to the ground, then the terror of being bound and threatened with being stabbed.
'As the punches hit my head and face I was expecting to be stabbed at any moment, it felt like hours as I was forced to lay face down in the dirt with my hands and legs bound not knowing if I would ever see my family again.'
Another said: 'Every time something reminds me of the attack, it takes me to a bad place and it affects my sleep.
'I have ongoing bad dreams particular about the moment of despair I felt at one point during the attack where I thought I would die in a horrible way.
'It is the memory of the fear of having that screwdriver rammed in my eye, that moment where the young man was threatening to do that.
'During the past six months there have been regular moments where I am taken back to that place.
'It can be watching television and seeing some violent scene in a drama or hearing about attacks on the news.'
The court heard a wealth of evidence was found on phones belonging to the thugs linking them to the robberies.
Blood belonging to one of their victim's was found on the sleeve of a £500 Canada Goose coat found in Ahmad's bedroom.
CCTV also captured the gang using their victim's bank cards at ATMs and in shops.
All three will be subject to an extended licence period due to the severity of their crimes - which were treated as a homophobic hate crime.
Police believe the gang may have robbed more victims who are too scared to speak out and have appealed for them to come forward.
After the case, Detective Chief Inspector Ian Ingram, of West Midlands Police, said: 'This was a calculated series of robberies with Khan, Ahmad and Umar deliberately targeting gay men via the dating app Grindr, because they believed they were vulnerable, easy targets.
'My team gathered compelling evidence against the trio - who in police interview showed no remorse for what they had done, and seemingly had no grasp of the trauma they had subjected their victim to.
'I know it took the four victims in this case a huge amount of bravery and courage to come forward and support the criminal justice process through to trial - and I commend them for doing so.
'Their evidence enabled us to launch a full scale investigation and a build a strong case, which ultimately brought the offenders to justice, and has undoubtedly prevented many other people from becoming a victim.
'Unfortunately we suspect the defendants may have committed other offences before they were arrested, and many victims may not have reported what happened to them to police.'

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