Postcode gang jailed for fatal stabbing of teenage boy
A teenage gang has been locked up for killing a 15-year-old boy whose stabbing in a postcode rivalry was foretold in rap lyrics.
Knife-obsessed rapper Junior Simpson, 17, from Croydon, south London, was on bail for wounding at the time of the murder of Jermaine Goupall.
The victim was chased down by two or three masked attackers armed with knives or machetes, the Old Bailey heard.
He was stabbed in the thigh and bled to death on the evening of August 8 last year in Georgia Road, Thornton Heath, in south London.
The circumstances of the attack had been predicted in lyrics penned by Simpson, aka M-Trap 0, the court heard.
Following a trial, he was found guilty of murder along with Samuel Oliver-Rowland, 18, from Croydon, and Adam Benzahi, 21, of Carshalton.
Simpson's girlfriend Saskia Haye-Elliot, 18, who was said to have worked as a cashier at Tottenham and Chelsea football clubs, was convicted of manslaughter.
Judge Anthony Leonard QC handed life sentences to the young men, with a minimum term of 18 years for Simpson, 20 years for Oliver-Rowland and 22 years for Benzahi.
Haye-Elliot was jailed for 12 years and six months for her role in the killing.
Judge Leonard told the defendants: "These ferocious killings from knife crime need to stop."
Simpson had an "extraordinary" collection of images of himself with knives and a machete and Haye-Elliot also appeared comfortable posing with a blade, he said.
The judge told Simpson: "Music was a big part of your life but it's clear so was your absolutely chilling addiction to holding and using knives."
The trial heard the defendants were linked to the CR0 gang in south London.
The attackers, who included Oliver-Rowland and Benzahi, wore masks or balaclavas when they set out in a Ford Focus to attack rival CR7 gang members.
Prosecutor Mukul Chawla QC described them as "nothing more than a marauding gang of thugs".
The killing came amid heightened tension between the two gangs fuelled by a series of "taunting" music videos posted online.
Judge Leonard said the killing was aggravated by the fact it involved "significant planning and premeditation", but said it was "pure chance" that Jermaine was targeted.
Detective Chief Inspector Tony Lynes, who led the investigation, said: "Jermaine's senseless murder appears to have stemmed from gang rivalry and violence, and we now have a family left utterly devastated and the lives of all involved blighted forever."