Wed, 07 Oct 2020
On 5th October, following a 2-week trial before Her Honour Judge Montgomery QC, Richard Street was convicted of the murder of 26-year-old Anas Chergat. Street’s co-defendant, Alan Martyn, pleaded guilty to the murder at an earlier hearing.
The case was prosecuted by Phil Bradley QC and Siobhan Collins and defended by Mark Heywood QC, leading Mark Nicholls of Sheppards Solicitors.
There was no dispute that Alan Martyn stabbed the victim at his home address, causing catastrophic injuries. Neither was it disputed that, at the time of the attack, Richard Street was outside the address.
As Mr Bradley QC told the Jury when opening the case, “The issue for you is whether, on the evidence, Richard Street was a party to the murder”. He went on to tell the Jury that both men were there to sell cannabis, which Mr Street peddled for “upstream suppliers”. He was in debt to those suppliers and had recently employed Alan Martyn as a “hard man” to make his business more trouble free.
The Jury was told that whilst Mr Street stood in the yard, he sent a number of threatening messages to Alan Martyn’s phone, which were clearly intended for the victim’s consumption. They included, ‘I want my money now’ and ‘someone is going to get hurt’.
Within minutes of the killing, Mr Street sent text and WhatsApp messages to family members in an attempt to establish a false alibi. Shortly after that, he and Mr Martyn met up again and were captured on CCTV as Mr Martyn disposed of the victim’s phones down a storm drain. Later that day, both men went out together to once more sell cannabis.
After more than 2 days of deliberating, the Jury convicted Mr Street of Murder by a majority of 11-1. Both men will be sentenced in due course.