‘Cold blooded’ killer found guilty of murdering rival in Leeds street

Bakhtiyar Omar.
Bakhtiyar Omar.
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A KILLER has been told he must serve a minimum of 25 years in prison over the ’cold blooded’ stabbing to death of a rival in a Leeds street.

Bakhtiyar Omar was given a life sentence yesterday after a jury found him guilty of murdering Sarhang Hamadi in an attack in Lincoln Green.

Iraqi national Omar, 30, plunged a knife up to the hilt into Mr Hamadi’s chest after the pair arranged to meet in the early hours of January 11 last year following a disagreement

The stabbing took place on the pavement outside Freshways supermarket at the junction of Lindsey Road and Lincoln Green Road.

The background to the disagreement is thought to have been over a loan Omar had previously given to Mr Hamadi, which he had been slow to pay back. Omar, of Nowell Place, Harehills, caught a bus to the Huddersfield hours later that morning but was arrested the same day.

Mr Justice Macduff told Omar: “You have told breathtaking lies to try to save your skin. Wickedly, you have made up stories about your former friends. But this jury has not been fooled by you.” The judge added: “I have watched you carefully through this trial. You have shown no remorse, only blank denial. You are dangerous and evil. You are a cold blooded killer.”

Detective Superintendent Mark Ridley, of West Yorkshire Police Protective Services (Crime), said: “Sarhang Hamadi was brutally killed by Omar in a completely unnecessary explosion of violence following an argument.

“Omar clearly went out to attack him with the intent of causing the victim serious harm as CCTV evidence showed him armed with a knife and putting on gloves as he left a nearby flat.

“Police enquiries quickly identified him as the suspect and he was arrested later that morning in Huddersfield.

“We recognise that no sentence will ever compensate Mr Hamadi’s family for their loss but we hope it will provide some source of comfort to see the man responsible sentenced to a long term of imprisonment for his actions.”