An Old Bailey judge has sentenced three men from Thornton Heath to jail terms of nine years each for the manslaughter of a man during a robbery for his BlackBerry phone.
Saravanakumar Sellappan, who was 24, was tracked by his three killers in London Road, Thornton Heath who followed him into Langdale Road, where they knocked him to the ground.
He died from a head injury after being sent home from hospital. The trial that ended last month heard that they had sold Mr Sellappan’s BlackBerry for £60.
They spent these proceeds having a chicken dinner. The three convicted defendants were found guilty of manslaughter and robbery.
“This was a violent robbery on a street on a wholly innocent victim. With the three of you there, the probability is that the mere threat of force would have persuaded him to hand over his BlackBerry. He was not given a chance. He was struck by a vicious blow which knocked him from his feet and caused head injuries. And for what? For the sake of a mobile phone which you thought was worth £100, but which netted you £60 and a chicken takeaway.”
The judge observed that the tenacity of a police enquiry ensured his killers were brought to justice as Mr Sellappan had not reported the robbery because he did not wish to concern his parents and inconvenience his employers. CCTV camera footage played a significant role in the prosecution.
Each of the defendants received their sentences totalling nine years Friday 21 May.