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Teenager sentenced for park fight murder


A 15-year-old schoolboy has been sentenced today (21 September 2012) to a life sentence and will serve a minimum of 13 years' imprisonment for killing a teenager during a fight in a recreation ground in Enfield.

Mobile phone footage showed a fight between 15-year-old Mustafa Gurpinar and the victim, 14-year-old Leroy James, on Wednesday 17 August 2011 on Ponders End Recreation Ground, North London.

The footage shows that no other person was involved and although a knife cannot be seen, Gurpinar is shown making contact with the victim who moves back having received a stab wound to the heart.

A short time later Leroy James collapsed and died at the scene.

CPS London lawyer, Sarah Counsell, said: "The mobile phone footage and the witness accounts at the scene proved that Gurpinar was the person seen fighting with the victim. However, he said that he was acting in self defence faced with a sudden and sustained assault initiated by Leroy James.

"The prosecution case was that he had brought the knife to the scene with the intention of using it, demonstrating that he was therefore guilty of murder. There was evidence before the Court of many Facebook conversations the defendant had with others where he had threatened the victim and his friends and saying that he would fight them using his 'pet' knife.

"This case shows the misery that knife crime causes. The CPS will always robustly prosecute people who use knives to cause serious injury or death. I hope that today's verdict brings some comfort to the victim's family at this difficult time."

The defendant was also convicted of one count of having an offensive weapon.