A JURY heard from a man accused of attempted robbery at knifepoint that money was ‘the last thing on his mind’ on the anniversary of his sister’s death.

Brendon Matiza, 26, is on trial at Oxford Crown Court charged with two counts of attempted robbery.

He is accused of holding a knife up to two men in Garsington Road on August 2 last year, demanding they give him money after ‘pretending’ to fall from his scooter.

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However, giving evidence on Monday (February 5), Matiza said money was the ‘last thing on his mind’ and the whole incident was a misunderstanding.

“I was celebrating my sister’s birthday but unfortunately she’s not here anymore,” he said. “She passed away…I was having a toast in her memory.

“I left my house to go the BP garage to get some snacks and more drinks.”

He told the jury he had fallen from his scooter on the way to the store and the sheathed knife he was carrying had fallen from his waistband in front of the two men.

“I tried my best to pick it up and conceal it,” he said. “They were they were looking at me kind of changed.

“I was trying to converse with them as they were scared and I was saying, ‘It’s nothing, don’t worry’.”

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He said the two men, who had finished shifts at a nearby hospital, had assumed he was attempting to rob them and kept ‘screaming and shouting’.

“I don’t they could hear me even I tried to calm them down,” he said. “They were screaming, ‘Please don’t rob us we have no money’.

“Money was probably the last thing on my mind. I was giving a toast to remember my sister.”

When asked by his defence barrister why he was carrying a knife in the first place, Matiza told the court he had ‘real concerns’ about his own safety due to allegedly being attacked a few weeks before.

“A few people jumped out of a car and I tried to run away but they caught me and I was beaten up,” he said.”

When asked why it wasn’t reported to the police, Matiza stated ‘they didn’t really do much’ so he dealt with the matter on his own.

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Matiza carried on saying that he tried to get back on his scooter and leave the men once a taxi driver stopped nearby and got involved.

“I soon realised that this was a really bad situation,” he said. “I didn’t manage to get home as the police showed up.”

The trial continues.