A man who deliberately drove a car at three men as they celebrated Eid, causing them serious injuries, has been found guilty of causing grievous bodily harm.
Akikul Islam, 25, of east London was found guilty of three counts of GBH on Monday, 15 May, following a trial at the Old Bailey.
The court heard how Islam had been the driver of a white Range Rover that was deliberately driven at a group of men who were celebrating Eid-al-Fitr in Frimley Way, E1.
Islam had arrived at the location in the company of another car shortly before 1am on 7 July 2016. CCTV footage showed three men get out of the two cars and become involved in a verbal altercation with a group of approximately ten males who were in Frimley Way – this then escalated into a fight.
Islam had remained in the car as the fight escalated around the vehicle – some of those involved were armed with baseball bats and bottles. The other car that had arrived with Islam drove off but Islam – whose car was facing in the other direction – remained. The group of men surrounded Islam’s car and he manoeuvred his vehicle before driving directly at the group.
His car ran over a 24-year-old man before colliding with a parked vehicle. Islam then positioned his car so that he had a clear route out of Frimley Way into Alderney Road but instead he reversed his car towards the group of men, running over a 20-year-old man and also the man he had previously struck.
Islam then drove forward with both men stuck beneath the car’s wheels before he collided with another parked car – he then drove off into Alderney Road.
Police and London Ambulance Service were called to the scene. The two injured men were taken to hospital for treatment – the 20-year-old man suffered critical injuries and remains receiving medical care; the 24-year-old man was discharged following treatment.
At approximately 3am that morning, officers on patrol in Vallance Road, E1 saw Islam’s car in the process of being towed away by a recovery company. Enquiries established that the car had been leased to Islam – he was subsequently arrested on 8 August.
Following detailed analysis of CCTV of the incident, investigators managed to establish that another man, who has not been identified, were also targeted by Islam. It is not known what the severity of his injuries were. After compiling evidence, Islam was charged.
Senior Investigating Officer Detective Inspector Chris Soole of Tower Hamlets police said, “Islam’s actions on that morning are utterly shocking. He had ample opportunity to leave the scene but chose to remain and then deliberately drove his car, not just once, but multiple times, at people at the scene.
“What started as a minor dispute, quickly escalated into a violent confrontation and ended with Islam’s deliberate attempt to try and seriously injure those in his way.
“I would like to praise the team who have worked tirelessly to compile the evidence that was used to convict Islam, in particular case officer DC Tom Lockwood and the collision investigator PC Steve Cash.
“Our enquiries into the other events that morning are ongoing and we will seek to arrest all those who contributed to this shocking series of events.”
Islam was remanded in custody and will be sentenced at the Old Bailey on Friday, 30 June. A number of other people have been arrested as part of this investigation and remain on bail. Enquiries are ongoing.