Teenager sentenced to life for murder of 16-year-old student

17/03/2014

An 18-year-old male has today been jailed for life, to serve a minimum of 16 years, at Birmingham Crown Court for the fatal stabbing of 16-year-old Azim Azam in the Moseley area of the city last year.

Azeem Akhtar, from Kings Heath, had pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to murdering the young student on the morning of 16 September 2013 after they had an altercation on the number 2 bus.

The defendant, Akhtar, was sitting on the bus when Azim got onto the same bus. When he saw him the victim he was verbally challenging and he followed Asim when he got off at his stop on Yardley Wood Road, Moseley.

By this stage Akhtar, who had put on gloves while on the bus, was armed with a knife, and , following a further verbal exchange, he stabbed Azim once to the chest. The wound penetrated the victim's heart and he collapsed shortly afterwards and the defendant ran off.

The emergency services quickly arrived, but the victim died at the scene from his injuries.

The following day, the defendant handed himself into a local police station and he was charged with the murder of Azim to which he has been sentenced to life today.

Kerry Moreton, Senior Crown Prosecutor from West Midlands Crown Prosecution Service, said:

"This was an extremely tragic case of a young man who was due to start his first day at college, but he had the misfortune of catching the same bus as his killer.

"Azim Azam, like many students beginning their first day at college, was looking forward to what he had hoped would have been a start to a bright academic future for him. However, this was brutally ended by the actions of Azeem Akhtar.

"The pair knew each other and an argument between the two young men ensued on a busy rush hour bus. They alighted and there was a brief physical altercation during which the defendant stabbed the victim once to the chest, fatally puncturing his heart.

"This prosecution highlights the consequences of carrying a knife, which can, as in this case, be fatal and change families for ever, and not just the family of the victim.

"Our thoughts are today with the family and friends of Azim Azam."