Murderers who torched car in Welwyn Garden City jailed for life

TWO dealers who stabbed a young man to death in a drugs dispute, ran over him, then dumped their getaway car in WGC, have been jailed for life.

Julian Edwards and Mustafa Demirtas attacked 19-year-old Michael McCarthy in a street in Stoke Newington, North London, on the night of November 19 last year.

A trial at the Old Bailey heard McCarthy was walking his dog when Edwards and Demirtas, both 21, pulled up in front of him in a silver Fiat Punto.

Demirtas, who was driving, got out of the car and confronted McCarthy, before Edwards got out and repeatedly stabbed the teenager.

They then returned to the vehicle, drove it backwards and forwards over their victim, before speeding off.

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The following afternoon, the pair dumped and torched the Fiat on a public footpath joining Handside Lane and The Old Drive.

As reported in the Welwyn Hatfield Times at the time, WGC fire crews raced to the scene after being called by nearby residents, who reported hearing a huge explosion.

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In court Edwards and Demirtas blamed each other for the crime – but jurors convicted both of murder.

Being sentenced on Thursday, Edwards, of Aubert Road, Highbury, and Demirtas, of Errol Street, Old Street, were told they would each serve a minimum of 19 years imprisonment.

Speaking after the court hearing, detective chief inspector John Macdonald, of the Met Police’s Homicide and Serious Crime Command, said: “Michael McCarthy was murdered as the result of a drugs dispute.

“This was a revenge attack carried out in cold blood by two men who have shown no remorse for their actions. Instead, both tried to avoid conviction by concocting their own versions of what had happened.

“This case illustrates how getting involved in drugs can lead directly to serious violence and murder.

“Demirtas and Edwards will now be able to reflect on their actions for many years.”

DCI Macdonald added: “My thoughts are with Michael McCarthy’s family. I hope they can take some solace knowing justice has been served.”

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