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Thursday, 22 December 2011

teenager who murdered a 16-year-old schoolboy outside a pub in Stretford has denied his motive was revenge for another gangland killing.

 

A teenager who murdered a 16-year-old schoolboy outside a pub in Stretford has denied his motive was revenge for another gangland killing. Moses Mathias told Manchester Crown Court he intended to commit a robbery but instead fired at a vehicle carrying Giuseppe Gregory out of "fear for my life". He said he did not learn of the death in May 2009 until the next day. Àt the age of 15 he later went on the run. Mathias, now 18, remained at large until he was arrested in Amsterdam earlier this year on a European Arrest Warrant after a joint investigation by the Serious Organised Crime Agency and GMP. He was flown back to the UK in June and four months later admitted the murder of the youngster who was gunned down in the early hours of May 11 in a car outside the Robin Hood pub in Stretford. In March 2010, Mathias's associates Njabulo Ndlovu and Hiruy Zerihun, then aged 19 and 18, were jailed for life and ordered to serve minimum terms of 21 years and 23 years respectively after they were convicted of Giuseppe's murder. Their trial heard the pair carried out the attack in revenge for the murder of Zerihun's boyhood friend Louis Brathwaite, also 16, who was shot dead in a betting shop in Withington, south Manchester, in January 2008. They were affiliated to Fallowfield Man Dem, a splinter group of the notorious Gooch Gang, who targeted Giuseppe and his friends because of their association to the rival gang the Longsight Crew. Mathias, of no fixed address, also admitted possessing - with Zerihun and Ndlovu - an imitation firearm, a self-loading pistol, a .32 pistol and six .32 bullet cartridges. But now he has argued the basis of his plea and claimed he did not know Louis Brathwaite, saying in evidence that the plan was to enter the pub and "rob the tills".

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