Dublin surgeon’s family killed in mistaken ‘revenge’, court told

Dr Muhammad Taufiq al-Sattar’s wife and three children died in fire at Leicester home

The family of a Dublin-based neurosurgeon died in a petrol fuelled blaze in their home when they were mistakenly targeted in a revenge attack following the fatal stabbing of a fitness coach,a court has heard.

Dr Muhammad Taufiq al-Sattar’s wife Shehnila Taufiq (47) and three children, daughter Zainab (19), and sons Bilal (17) and Jamal (15) were killed when the fire engulfed their terraced house in Wood Hill, Leicester in the early hours of September 13th last year.

Dr Taufig al Sattar was working in Ireland at the time.

Kemo Porter (19), Tristan Richards (22), Nathaniel Mullings (19), Shaun Carter (24) Jackson Powell, (20), Aaron Webb (20), Aaron Jeffers (21), and a 17-year-old youth, who cannot be named for legal reasons, each deny murdering the family.


Opening the Crown’s case against the eight defendants in their trial at Nottingham Crown Court yesterday, prosecutor Richard Latham QC told the jury the fire was a “retribution process” for the fatal stabbing of their friend, Antoin Akpom, hours earlier.

Mr Latham told the jury the Taufiq family had no connection to the incident involving Mr Akpom or the eight defendants.

The court heard that Mr Akpom had been stabbed in the back in a “confrontation” involving two 19-year-olds, Hussain Hussain and Abdul Hakim, at around 5.30pm on September 12th,2013 less than a mile away in Kent Street.

He was pronounced dead in hospital at 7pm.

Hussain was jailed for life with a minimum term of 15 years for Mr Akpom’s murder following a trial at Stafford Crown Court earlier this month.

The jury was told that Hakim’s mother lived two doors down from the arson attack on the Taufiq family home.

Mr Latham said: “They simply got the wrong house — a tragedy.”


Rachel Flaherty

Rachel Flaherty

Rachel Flaherty is an Irish Times journalist