Child killer named as pair jailed for life over drive-by shooting

A man and boy have today been jailed for life for the fatal drive-by shooting of a teenager – as we can reveal the identity of the child killer for the first time.

Riaz Ahmed was just 15 when, along with a 19-year-old man, he conspired to kill Abdul Xasan in Coventry last year. 

Ahmed was driving a stolen VW Golf when the gunman – who we’re not yet able to name for legal reasons – opened fire from the back seats.

Riaz Ahmed was just 15 at the time of the killing. Now jailed for life.
Riaz Ahmed was just 15 at the time of the killing. Now jailed for life.

Mr Xasan – himself just 19-years-old – was shot as he walked along Harnall Lane, Hillfields just after 2.30pm on 13 March.

A post mortem revealed he suffered two gunshot wounds to his back which caused catastrophic internal injuries. He died in the street.

Both offenders were convicted of murder last month and today (8 Jan) have been jailed for life.

Ahmed – now aged 16 – must serve a minimum of 18 years in youth detention followed by prison, while his accomplice will spend at least 27 years behind bars.

Due to Ahmed’s age we weren’t previously able to identify him but the judge today lifted reporting restrictions allowing us to release his name.

The offenders were linked to the C2 gang in Coventry while the victim – who’d been arrested just days before the murder for possessing an imitation gun – was connected to a rival group known as RB7. 

Detective Chief Inspector Scott Griffiths from our Homicide Unit led the investigation.

He said: “These sentences must act as a stark warning about the dangers of gang affiliation: you run the risk of serious injury or death, or the possibility of spending much of your life locked up. There has to be a better option for young people.

“We can help people who want to turn their backs on gang culture. Along with our partners including charities and support groups, we can help young people make better choices.

“But for those who insist on affiliating themselves to violent gangs there is a very strong possibility they are going to be seriously injured, killed or spend much of their life locked up in jail.”

Getaway driver Ahmed sped away from the murder scene in the Golf Type R – stolen in Rugby the previous day – and arranged for others to set it on fire in an attempt to destroy forensic evidence.

We found the car used in the drive-by shooting burned out
We found the car used in the drive-by shooting burned out

But the pair weren’t on the run for long.

We quickly identified them as potential suspects and both were arrested in the early hours of the next morning after we raided their home addresses in Coventry.

Both were electronically tagged at the time due to their suspected involvement in other offences – and we seized tagging information that showed they were in the street at the time of the murder. 

Shotgun cartridges found in the burned out car were also matched by ballistics experts to spent cartridges recovered from the murder scene. 

Despite strong evidence against them the pair denied murder – but following a four week trial at Birmingham Crown Court last month they were found guilty.

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