Two “drunken louts” who kicked a taxi driver to death after he asked them to stop eating food in his cab have been jailed.
Connor McPartland, 20, and, Martin Treacy, 18, repeatedly punched and kicked Ali Asghar, 39, in a “ferocious, brutal and totally unforgiving attack” on 30 October.
The pair were angered after he took them to the wrong address that they had put in the Uber app, a court was told.
Manchester Crown Court heard the pair had ordered the Uber to meet some people a the Ko-Ko Lounge nightclub in Rochdale.
But McPartland entered the address for Coco’s Grillhouse and Desserts in Queensway, Rochdale into the app.
McPartland and Treacy, both of Oldham, denied murder but were found guilty after a nine-day trial.
Driver asked pair to stop eating in cab
The cabbie had asked them to stop eating cheeseburger and chips in the cab and when he explained they’d put the wrong address in to Uber, they attacked him.
Prosecutor Galais Gozem said the taxi arrived at the address and paused before stopping near a Shell petrol station shortly after 4am.
The court heard Mr Asghar opened the rear passenger door to let the passengers out when a ‘ferocious argument’ broke out.
The pair launched into the attack which culminated in Mr Asghar being pushed over, cracking his head and fracturing his skull.
The par kicked him in the head as he lay defenceless on the floor, the court heard.
Another taxi driver, Mohammad Khalid, saw Mr Asghar being confronted and attempted to reason with the two men.
He then retreated to his taxi fearing he would also be attacked and called the police.
Tragically, Mr Asghar died two weeks later in hospital after suffering devastating head injuries in the assault.
The men have now been jailed for 14 years, six months and 13 years, six months respectively.
A ‘savage and sustained’ attack
Their barristers said both were remorseful and planned to use their time in custody to “learn and improve”.
Sentencing, Judge Alan Conrad QC told the defendants: “Ali Asghar had the misfortune to meet you two, a pair of drunken, entitled louts.
“A decent hard-working man, he was a credit to those close to him and society in general.
“The attack upon him followed a dispute for which he was in no way to blame. You both attacked him and both bear equal responsibility for the violence and the consequences.
“This was a savage and sustained attack. You left him lying on the ground with dreadful injuries and you both ran off and started to plan your cover-up.”
In a statement released by police, Ali’s heartbroken family said he was a loving and devoted son, brother and friend who will be forever missed.
The statement read: “On behalf of his family we would like to convey our sincerest gratitude to the police officers, barrister, the judge, the jury and all else involved who have helped our Ali to receive justice for what happened to him.
“A huge heart felt thank you to all”.
Speaking after sentencing, senior investigating officer Phil Reade welcomed the sentence, saying: “The senseless actions of Treacy and McPartland that morning were utterly despicable and led to a family losing a much loved son and brother.
“These two men are clearly violent individuals and I am relieved that they are now off our streets and have time to think about their actions and the hurt and sorrow they have caused.
“The judge today highly commended the taxi driver for his actions in attempting to save Ali’s life and I’d also like to thank him for his bravery.”