A teenager who killed a stranger for being annoying was put up in a Travelodge after being charged with murder because there was no space for him in council-monitored accommodation, it can now be revealed.
Alfie Kibble, 18, and a 17-year-old boy were convicted on Wednesday of the murder of 21-year-old Gabriel Stoyanov, who was stabbed to death after coming into contact with the teenagers on the 181 bus in south London on November 4 last year.
A trial heard how Mr Stoyanov had been out socialising with a friend, he was “drunk and annoying” on the bus, and was then pursued by the teenagers who armed themselves with a knife and a motorbike chain and lay in wait outside a Bromley takeaway.
When Kibble and the 17-year-old were first charged with murder last November, an Old Bailey hearing was told they lived a “nomadic lifestyle” while Kibble was known to police for violent behaviour and suspected gang involvement.
However when denied bail Kibble was placed into a Travelodge – branded “wholly inappropriate” by prosecutor Fiona Robertson – to await his murder trial.
“The local authority says they have nowhere suitable for these defendants to go”, she said.
After he was charged with murder, the 17-year-old, who cannot be identified, had been placed with an uncle who had previous convictions for drugs offences and violence, at a home when the teenager had tried to evade justice after the stabbing.
Judge Anthony Leonard KC adjourned the case for seven days after expressing concerns at the situation, and the two teenagers were then moved to alternative accommodation.
The details were aired in a pre-trial hearing last November, and can be reported today for the first time after the conclusion of the trial.
Kibble was convicted at trial of murder and possession of an offensive weapon, while the 17-year-old boy admitted possession of a knife and was found guilty of murder. A third defendant, aged 15, was found not guilty of murder but guilty of manslaughter, and he was also convicted of possession of an offensive weapon.
Prosecuting barrister Edward Brown KC said Mr Stoyanov did nothing to justify the attack, telling the court: “Fortified by drink, Gabriel sought to engage the defendants, and although the defendants do not appear to be unduly troubled by his antics at this stage, his attention was not welcomed.
“It should have been the end of any kind of confrontation – whether in jest, or as a result of being a nuisance or otherwise.”
He had flicked the ear of the 17-year-old youth and punched him in the stomach but without much force before being taken off the bus by his friend.
The defendants got off the bus two stops later and went to the home of the 17-year-old, jurors were told.
They then armed themselves with weapons, and as Mr Stoyanov came out of the takeaway the 15-year-old boy threw a bottle that hit him, Kibble tried to hit him with the motorcycle chain but missed, and the 17-year-old then stabbed the victim in the chest with a knife.
In a victim impact statement, his mother Mariana Petrova said her son, a business management student, dreamed of becoming an estate agent and travelling the world.
“They took that life from him. They took a part of me too. They took away my son. My best friend”, she said.
“Losing a child is a terrible thing and anyone who has not experienced it cannot understand it, but I assure you that there is nothing worse than this.
“No one has the right to take a human life. No one has the right to tear families apart in this way.”
Sentencing was adjourned to a later date.