Sheffield killer loses bid for freedom

Spital Hill murder scene
Spital Hill murder scene
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A killer who shot dead his friend during a party in Sheffield has lost his bid to overturn his murder conviction.

Abdi Mohammed Omar, aged 27, of Lopham Street, Burngreave, fired the antique sawn-off shotgun behind his back without looking killing Deeq Ali instantly during a private function at the Spital Hill Plaza.

Spital Hill murder scene

Spital Hill murder scene

The Somali national was jailed for life and ordered to serve a minimum of 30 years behind bars after being found guilty of the 2011 murder and admitting having a prohibited firearm.

But his lawyers urged judges at London’s Criminal Appeal Court to quash his murder conviction, saying it was ‘unsafe’ because jurors were misdirected by the trial judge.

His appeal was thrown out by three of the country’s top judges, who said there was no reason to doubt the safety of the conviction.

They also rejected his bid to challenge his minimum jail term, saying it was ‘not excessive’.

Abdi Omar

Abdi Omar

The court heard Omar shot and killed Mr Ali at a private party after ‘showing off’ with a sawn-off shotgun that dated back to the time of the First World War.

He had fired the gun outside the Plaza earlier in the night and his friends had tried to persuade him to leave, but he re-loaded and re-cocked the weapon so it was ready to fire again.

Once back inside, Omar drew the gun again, held it behind his back and fired blind – just a few inches away from Mr Ali – causing a fatal head wound.

When arrested, he denied any wrongdoing, claiming he had been watching football elsewhere at the time of the shooting.

Omar’s case was that he had fired the weapon in a ‘reckless, dangerous and unlawful act’ but without murderous intent.

But, dismissing his appeal, Lord Justice Leveson said there was nothing to justify interference with the jury’s verdict.

He added: “We have no doubt whatsoever in concluding that the judge was entitled to pass the sentence he did.”