TWO men on trial for the alleged murder of a 24-year-old in Slough were allegedly ‘defending themselves’, a jury heard.

Riaz Miah, 21, of no fixed above, and Hassan Al-Kubanji, 21, of Peabody Avenue, London, are currently on trial charged with the death of Mohammed Rafaqit Kayani.

The 24-year-old died from a fatal stab wound to the chest during an incident in Keel Drive on August 30, 2022.

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It is the Crown’s case that Miah and Al-Kubanji were drug dealers from London and had ‘chased’ Mr Kayani from a playground in Concorde Way to the Slough Hindu Temple after an ‘altercation’.

The three men were caught on CCTV ‘striking at each’ before Mr Kayani fell to the ground.

However, Reading Crown Court heard today (February 20) that Miah and Al-Kubanji were allegedly ‘defending themselves’ from Mr Kayani and his friend, Adil Mahmood.

It is the case of Amjad Malik, defending Miah, and Dean George, defending Al-Kubanji, that Mr Kayani had confronted the defendants for selling drugs on ‘their territory,’ at the request of Mr Mahmood.

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However, the eyewitness denied this and told the court the pair were ‘heading to the gym’ at the time of the altercation.

Cross-examining Mr Mahmood, Mr Malik said: “You were drug dealing on the 30th of August and this was your territory and you sent Mr Kayani to deal with this man with that sword.

“You’ve got no explanation for why your friend had a sword.”

The jury were shown CCTV footage of Mr Mahmood running to Mr Kayani in Keel Drive after the incident. He could be seen ‘kicking away’ a sword sheath before people came to help as well as calling someone on the phone – but not the emergency services.

Mr Malik suggested Mr Mahmood had not wanted people to see the sheath and did not want police to attend the incident. However, Mr Mahmood denied this.

He said: “I didn’t see nothing in his hand. I [didn’t] see a sword. I just wanted to check if [the sheath] had something in it. I don’t know, I didn’t want to hide it.

“I was panicking seeing my friend like that which is why I was running back and forth to him. Nothing else was on my mind.

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“I was just panicking too much – I should have called an ambulance.”

A third man is also on trial, Miguel John, charged with one count each of assisting an offender and possession of a blade/sharp pointed article in a public place.

The trial continues.