Chapeltown Carnival murderer has his prison sentence extended after Court of Appeal rule original jail term was 'unduly lenient'

A killer serving life for murder over the stabbing of a man during the Leeds West Indian Carnival celebrations has had his minimum prison sentence extended.

By Tony Gardner
Thursday, 18th March 2021, 1:20 pm
Updated Thursday, 18th March 2021, 5:54 pm

Hussein Semusu was told today he must now serve at least 19 years behind bars over the death of Tcherno Ly.

Semusu, 21, of Grange Avenue, Chapeltown was originally handed a 16-year minimum term after he was found guilty of murder after a trial at Leeds Crown Court.

Judges at the Court of Appeal today increased the term by three years after ruling that the original sentence was too lenient.

Hussein Semusu has had his minimum prison term increased from 16 years to 19 years for the murder of Tcherno Ly at Chapeltown Carnival.

Semusu and his co-accused, Beni Namil were found guilty of murdering 21-year-old during the 2019 Chapeltown Carnival celebrations. Nami, of Nassau Place, Chapeltown, used a 'Rambo-style' knife to inflict the fatal knife wound to 21-year-old Mr Ly's chest as the two men fought on Chapeltown Road.

The stabbing took place as the area was packed with people enjoying the carnival weekend on August 25, 2019

Nami, 20, and Mr Ly had fought with each other just over a fortnight previously and both were armed with knives on the night of the fatal stabbing.

Nami also suffered a knife wound to his chest as the two men fought.

Tcherno Ly was stabbed to death during carnival celebrations in August 2019.

The jury heard how Semusu encouraged his friend to carry out the attack and provided "back-up" for the confrontation.

Nami was given life with a minimum of 20 years after being found guilty of murder.

The minimum term was increased to 26 years last month after he was found guilty of raping an eight year old girl following another trial.An application was subsequently made that the murder sentences were unduly lenient and the Attorney General’s Reference was heard at the Court of Appeal this morning.

The court quashed Semusu’s previous sentence and increased it to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 19 years. Nami’s original sentence remained unchanged.

Beni Nami is also serving a life sentence for the murder of Tcherno Ly.

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Chief Inspector Vanessa Rolfe, of West Yorkshire Police Homicide and Major Enquiry Team, said: “Tcherno Ly’s life was brutally cut short when he was stabbed to death in a street busy with people celebrating the carnival weekend.

“His family have been left absolutely devastated at his death in such sudden and violent circumstances.

“No amount of time in prison could ever truly compensate them for their loss but we hope the increase in Semusu’s sentence will more accurately reflect the seriousness of his actions and the pain he and Nami have caused to Tcherno’s family.”

Sentencing the killers last December, Mr Justice Cavangah: "The stabbing took place at night, in a public place, surrounded by members of the public, who will no doubt have been terrified by what they witnessed."

The judge told Nami he had been the "prime mover" in the killing, saying: "It was your idea, and it was carried out to further your feud with Tcherno Ly.

"You were the person who brought the knife to the scene and you were the person who stabbed Mr Ly."

"You have shown no remorse for the killing of Tcherno Ly."

The judge told Semusu: "You too, have shown no significant remorse."

Both defendants have previous convictions for knife-related crime.

In October 2018, Nami threatened to stab someone before ordering him to give him his bicycle.

Semusu has a previous conviction for possessing a machete in public and two for possessing an offensive weapon in a young offender institution.

The court heard Mr Ly had been born in Guinea-Bissau and had spent some time living in Portugal before moving to England and settling in Leeds with his step-mum.

He was doing a business studies college course at the time of his death and was described by relatives as "a happy, helpful, and family-minded young man, who was loved by his family and friends."