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Trio Jailed For Teen's Tube Station Murder

Three teenagers have each been jailed for at least 18 years for stabbing to death a promising young footballer in front of evening commuters at a London Tube station.

Sofyen Belamouadden was 15 when he was attacked at Victoria Underground station in March 2010.

He was stabbed nine times after pupils from two rival west London schools clashed near the busy ticket office, as horrified commuters looked on.

Obi Nwokeh, 19, Christopher Omoregrie, 18, and Samson Odegbune, also 18, were each given a life sentence and told they must serve a minimum of 18 years in detention.

They were also ordered to serve concurrent eight-year detention sentences for conspiracy to cause grievous bodily harm (GBH).

Old Bailey judge Christopher Moss said the attack - which, the court was told, lasted only 12 seconds - was "ferocious and merciless".

The court also heard how Odegbune, who was carrying a Samurai sword, had led the group of pupils from his school into the confrontation.

Earlier, Sofyen's father Abdeslan told the court his son has been a football "star in the making" and his death had devastated the family.

The 51-year-old said in an impact statement: "He was an outstanding all-round player.

"He was born and bred in London and often talked of his ambition to represent England in the World Cup final."

"I have no wish to inflict revenge on the culprits but Sofyen, whose life was tragically cut short, would expect justice to take its course.

"I often think of the suffering he must have gone through, that he was set upon with such savagery and why I was not there to protect him."

Sofyen's mother Naima's said in her statement: "I hope the memory of what they did to my son lives with them every day as it lives with me."

Five other youths found guilty of various offences connected to the attack were also sentenced.

Samuel Roberts, 19, and Adonis Akra and Femi Oderinwale, both aged 18, were found guilty of manslaughter and given 12 years' detention each.

Tyrone Richards, 17, and 19-year-old Enoch Amoah were found guilty of conspiracy to commit GBH and were sentenced to seven years' detention.

Judge Moss told the youths: "You gathered together for the purpose of serious mass violence in a busy public place at the height of the rush hour."

He added that they had shown no remorse or acknowledged responsibility for Sofyen's death.

The only female charged in connection with the death, 19-year-old Victoria Osoteku, has been found guilty of manslaughter and will be sentenced next week.

The defendants, all originally from west London, were among 20 pupils charged in connection with the attack.

Four youths were earlier sentenced to two years' detention after pleading guilty to violent disorder.

Three have been cleared of all charges and four others are still to be tried.