At the High Court in Glasgow today, 13 June 2014, Mohamud Mohamud, Cadil Huseen and Hussein Ali were each sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of Mohamed Abdi.

On sentencing, Lord Turnbull made the following statement in court:

“The evidence led in this case made it plain beyond any doubt that each of you and your other associates were involved with, or associated with, a well organised, large scale and highly profitable drug supply network operating in and around Edinburgh. 

The sale of these drugs funded a lifestyle which gave constant access to motor vehicles, rented properties to live in in Edinburgh and large sums of cash to spend in nightclubs and elsewhere. 

It is clear from the evidence which I heard in the trial that you and your other associates were living a wholly corrupt lifestyle, which in turn infected and corrupted others who came into contact with your group. 

The extent to which this lifestyle had an utterly corrupting effect is clear from the evidence of the escalating conflict between your group and the rival group of drug dealers of which Mohammed Abdi was part. It is clear that in order to try and protect and maximise your own illicit business you were prepared to engage in violence of an extreme nature.

The culmination of this exchange of violence began on the night of Saturday 25 May last year. It is clear that a large group of your gang members and associates gathered together with the explicit intention of finding and attacking Mohamed Abdi and the other members of his group, in order to eliminate the competition which they had come to offer. 

All of those involved in the large group of which you were members were intent on inflicting serious violence on your competitors. 

Whilst the evidence which I heard did not make it plain whether the members of your group travelling in the Ford Fiesta were aware of the availability of firearms, I am perfectly satisfied that each of you, having been occupants of the Volkswagen Sharan for a lengthy period of time, were well aware of the fact that firearms were being carried and might well come to be used. 

In the accounts which you gave to the authors of the social work reports I consider that each of you sought to minimise your role in the events which unfolded and, whether any one or more of you actually fired any of the shots from within the Volkswagen Sharan or not, you were full participants in what was planned, even although the plan came to be executed in circumstances different from what had been expected. 

I should also observe that I have been given some information about the background circumstances of your families and the early lives of at least two of you in Somalia.

It is well known that the war in that country caused terrible suffering for large numbers of the civilian population and that many families fled seeking asylum and support in other countries. 

It is very disappointing to realise that you have each abused the opportunity to live a new life free from the violence and oppression which your parents sought to escape. 

You have not only wasted the valuable chances you were given but have brought violence and criminality to the communities which were willing to provide you with safety and opportunity. 

I should also say that in conducting yourselves in this fashion you appear to have acted in stark contrast to the other members of your families who fled Somalia with you, or before you were born. 

It seems clear that they have all integrated well into their host communities and have conducted themselves in a law-abiding and responsible fashion. 

I am sure that they will all be both shamed and shocked by all aspects of your conduct. 

I do not intent to make any distinction between any of you in passing sentence. I consider that your culpability is all equal. 

I will though take account in each case of your age, which I consider to be an important consideration. I will also take account of your general backgrounds and your lack of any significant criminal record. 

As required by law to do I will sentence each of you to life imprisonment to date: 

            in Mohamud Mohamud’s case from 6 June 2013 

            in Cadil Huseen’s case from 7 June 2013, and 

            in Hussein Ali’s case from 5 July 2013 

in the case of each of you the period which I will order that you must serve before being entitled to apply for parole will be 25 years.”