A GANG of killers hunted their victim on the streets of Oxford before running him down in a car and repeatedly stabbing him in a 'savage' onslaught, a court heard.

Prosecutors claim that the four men ‘meted out retribution’ for an earlier fight and left their victim Luciano Dos Santos Almeida dying and covered in blood near to a bustling Cowley Road.

One of the multiple knife wounds was delivered with such force, jurors were told, that the tip of the blade became lodged in the victim's skull.

Oxford Mail:

Luciano Dos Santos Almeida

Michael Yemane, 20, of South Bridge Row, Oxford, Welid Solomon, 25, of Field Avenue, Oxford, Sasan Mohammed Khalid, 19, of no fixed abode, and Safeen Abdullah Karimi, 27, of Hode Garth, Thame, all deny one count of murder.

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They are accused of killing the 22-year-old at Southfield Road in East Oxford at about 11.30pm on February 27 this year.

Solomon also denies a further count of doing acts tending to pervert the course of justice by setting fire to a car allegedly used in the killing.

Oxford Mail:

Forensics on the scene the following day

As the trial at Oxford Crown Court got under way today prosecutor Paul Cavin QC said that the murder was sparked after a ‘fight’ at nearby Ridgefield Road in the moments before the fateful attack on Mr Almeida.

Jurors were told that during that fight witnesses saw ‘pushing and shoving’ as well as punches and bottles being thrown before one was seen wielding a ‘long pole-like object’.

Prosecutors said that after this incident, which involved Solomon, Yemane and Mr Almeida, the two men called for ‘reinforcements’ in order to seek revenge.

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Mr Cavin said they then set out in two cars – a black BMW and a Kia Picanto driven by Solomon in an effort to find Mr Almeida and to ‘mete out some retribution.’

In CCTV footage played to jurors the cars are seen to drive around a number of nearby streets, in what prosecutors say was the men ‘hunting’ for their target.

Oxford Mail:

Not long after, at about 11.30pm, CCTV footage at the junction between Cowley Road and Southfield Road appears to show the Kia plough into Mr Almeida after he had crossed the road in the direction of a house he was staying at.

It was at this moment, jurors were told, that the attack which would ultimately lead to his death began.

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Jurors were told that Mr Almeida was stabbed multiple times after he was run over and he later died in hospital of his injuries.

Witnesses who heard the attack said they could hear Mr Almeida scream 'help, help, help' before police swarmed on the area and paramedics arrived.

A pathologist report of his injuries, prosecutors said, found he had been stabbed seven times to the back of his body, along with a number of smaller wounds to his legs and arms.

Detailing one wound inflicted to the back of the head jurors were told it was made with so much force the top of the knife had broken off and become embedded in Mr Almeida's skull.

Mr Cavin told jurors: "It is our case that they were all involved in a pre-planned, co-ordinated and, lets's not beat around the bush, savage attack on Mr Almeida that ultimately led to his death.

"The plan was at the very least to cause really serious harm to him.

"The issue for you is likely to be whether a particular defendant was involved in that plan and took some part in it."

Jurors also heard of a later incident at a Tesco in Reading whereby Solomon's Kia was found on fire with firefighters claiming lighter fluid was discovered inside.

Solomon denies perverting the course of justice in relation to that fire and all four deny murder.

The trial, which is expected to last six weeks, continues.