Man found guilty of killing father-of-four Akhtar Javeed as police continue search for shooter

An armed robber has been found guilty of the manslaughter of a father of four who was shot at point-blank range during a botched robbery at a warehouse.

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Top left: Suraj Mistry has been convicted of manslaughter. Top right: Tahir Zarif fled to Pakistan and is still being sought. Bottom left: Lemar Wali has been convicted of conspiracy. Bottom right: Sander van Aalten admitted conspiracy to rob at an earlier hearing.

Akhtar Javeed was shot in the neck after trying to fight of the armed robbers and died shortly after outside the warehouse.

Suraj Mistry was acquitted of murdering Akhtar Javeed but convicted of manslaughter, conspiracy to commit robbery and possession of firearms with intent to cause fear of violence after a six-week trial at Birmingham Crown Court.

A second defendant, Lemar Wali, was cleared of  murder and manslaughter but convicted of conspiracy to rob.

He had claimed that he did not know his co-defendants were armed when they took him to the warehouse to commit the robbery in Digbeth.

Another man who was involved in the raid, Sander van Aalten, a former employee at the warehouse and the ‘inside man’, admitted conspiracy to rob at an earlier hearing.

Prosecutors allege that the man who fired the fatal shot was Tahir Zarif, who is now believed to be in Pakistan after boarding a flight a few days after the murder with his mother. His mother has since returned to the UK.

The court heard how the robbers struck around 6:30pm, armed with loaded guns and silencers, when there were only six men at the warehouse including Mr Javeed, all were tied up and held at gunpoint in the office of the warehouse and told to get on their knees and surrender their mobile phones.

Mr Javeed was then ordered by Zarif to get up and lead him to the safe and that was the last time his staff saw him alive.

Gunshots were then heard by the staff members as Javeed was shot three times, once in the foot and once in the mouth and then point-blank in the throat.

Police later said Mr Javeed tried to bravely flee from the attackers and managed to get outside of the premises but died instantly on the pavement once he was outside.

The alleged robbers never made it to the safe and escaped to a waiting getaway car.

Following the conviction Mr Javeed’s daughter, Lilas Javeed, paid tribute to him as the “best dad you could ever wish for”.

“We miss him a lot and we wish he was still here with us today. He was always the life and soul of every party or occasion.”

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