'I swear I will shoot': Businessman tied up and stabbed during gunpoint robbery tells of terrifying ordeal

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A businessman held at gunpoint and stabbed during an attempted robbery at his east London home told today how he tried to fight off his attackers “to protect my life”.

Abbas Hedayati, a car dealer, was dragged from his bed and tied up by the raiders who mistakenly believed he had money stashed at his home in Walthamstow.

One of the thugs laughed and misquoted a line from The Godfather – “this is business, nothing personal” – before plunging a knife into his back.

The attempted robbery in Warner Road was organised by his former best friend of 13 years, Aso Ghadr, over money he believed was owed to him.

Mr Hedayati awoke during the raid in the early hours of December 29 to feel a knife pressed to his neck and a gun against his head. He was told: “Tell me where’s the money. I swear I will shoot you.”

The businessman was then tied up and stabbed in the shoulder and right arm.

Mr Hedayati, originally from Iran, said he tried to “do all he could” to fight off the gang. He was ultimately saved by his friend Borwar Ahmed and his girlfriend who were asleep next door, while visiting from Manchester ahead of New Year’s Eve.

Mr Ahmed awoke and called the police but was then also tied up and gagged. Officers arrived armed with Tasers and detained five members of the gang — recovering four knives and an imitation firearm.

Ringleader Ghadr was arrested three months later. Ghadr, 32, hired Andy Chu, 33, Kazm Kareem, 36, Hoopang Wong, 30, Mohammed Ramjhun, 32, and Usman Deen, 29, to break into Mr Hedayati’s home.

The six were jailed for a total of 63 years at Snaresbrook crown court on Monday.

They were found guilty of offences including aggravated burglary, having an imitation firearm, wounding with intent and two counts of false imprisonment.

Ghadr was jailed for 15 years and the others given sentences of between eight and 12 years. 

Mr Hedayati, who has refused to move from his home to “prove he wasn’t scared”, said: “They thought there was cash in my house but obviously there wasn’t a penny.

“I had to defend myself and do what I had to to protect my life.

“Thank God my wife wasn’t there at the time. If it wasn’t for my guests calling the police, I don’t know what would have happened. It’s now all a dream. It doesn’t feel real.”

He said of the sentencing: “It couldn’t have been a better result. It’s a relief there’s justice and I can’t thank the police and the judge enough for reaching this outcome.”

Detective constable Lee Warrington of the Met’s Flying Squad said: “This was a terrifying burglary in which these defendants used extreme violence.

“I would like to pay tribute to the victims for their bravery, courage and support. These offenders have shown no remorse and I hope that the fact that they will collectively have 63 years to reflect on their actions brings a measure of comfort to their victims.”

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