Foster mother took double killer into her home thinking he was a teenage asylum seeker

Foster mother took double killer into her home thinking he was a teenage asylum seeker

The foster mother of an Afghan asylum seeker who murdered an aspiring Royal Marine has recalled how he became a 'Jekyll and Hyde' character who 'thought he had the right to carry a knife'.

Lawangeen Abdulrahimzai, 21, murdered Thomas Roberts, 21, during an argument over an e-scooter in Bournemouth town centre in March last year.

He had been handed a 20-year prison sentence in his absence for killing two people in Serbia, but was granted entry to the UK after telling authorities he was a 14-year-old schoolboy whose parents had been killed by the Taliban.

Abdulrahimzai deceived Border Force and the Home Office so comprehensively that he was placed with foster mother Nicola Marchant-Jones, who says that she had 'had to accept he was 14' and had 'no other way of checking it.'

But Abdulrahimzai went on to become a street fighter who attacked his foster mother and boasted about his love of knives on TikTok.

Ms Marchant-Jones fostered him from early 2020 to mid-2021 in Poole before he was moved to a different family. 

Ms Marchant-Jones described how Abdulrahimzai would often get into trouble at school for fighting.

She also recalled how during a shopping trip to JD Sports to buy a new coat, she caught the defendant with a knife - which he had taken from her kitchen - and took it from him.

He had made a sheath for the weapon and kept it on his waist. 

But when Abdulrahimzai - nicknamed Lo by Ms Marchant-Jones - was caught with a knife, he was only given words of advice by Dorset Police. 

'At one point he said he was doing street fighting', the foster mother added. 

'He appeared to have lots of money. I didn't see any money but he was buying nice things. He said he got £100 for ten minutes fighting.'

When he nearly headbutted Ms Marchant-Jones during an argument he was removed from her care.

Abdulrahimzai, 21, has now been found guilty of murdering Thomas Roberts during the argument in March last year.

The 'knife-obsessed' criminal had fled Serbia after shooting dead two men and being sentenced to 20 years in jail, but his previous convictions were not marked on any police databases or intelligence systems. 

Reports from August 2018 in the Serbian media detailed how the two Afghans were gunned down near the village of Dobrinci - around 50 miles from the capital Belgrade.

Their bodies were left in a field, with police following a theory that it was a feud between rival Afghan gangs over people smuggling routes.

On March 12 last year, he stabbed Mr Roberts twice in the chest with a '10cm blade' after an argument with his friend about an e-scooter outside a Subway sandwich shop.

The Afghan admitted manslaughter at an earlier hearing, but denied murder and forced a trial. The jury did not believe him.

Opening the case last week, prosecutor Nic Lobbenberg KC told jurors it was a 'fatal encounter all about a scooter which has cost this boy his life'.

He added: 'Thomas was the peacemaker, he came between the two men. For his troubles, he received two stab wounds.'

Abdulrahimzai later 'buried' the knife, and burnt some of the clothes he was wearing, the court was told. 

A court heard Mr Roberts, a DJ, was enjoying a night out with his friend James Medway, 24, when he got into an argument with Abdulrahimzai over an e-scooter outside a Subway sandwich store.

Jurors were told that, moments after intervening in the disagreement, Mr Roberts sustained two stab wounds to his chest from an 'aggressive' Abdulrahimzai - with one slicing through his heart.

The Home Office would not comment about Abdulrahimzai specifically, however, a spokesman said: 'Foreign National Offenders who exploit our system and commit crimes here in the UK will face the full force of the law, including deportation at the earliest opportunity for those eligible.'