England

Brothers 'kidnapped and beaten' over property deal

A businessman hired heavies to beat and humiliate two brothers in a dispute over a property deal, a court is told.

At one point Mohammed Nawaz and his brother Haq faced a mock execution, Snaresbrook Crown Court heard.

Sanjeev Dhir, 37, allegedly lured the men to his office in Stoke Newington, north London in April 2007.

Mr Dhir, Ranjit Gojra, 39, from Belvedere, Kent, and Anthony Malone, 39, from Billingham, Teesside, deny kidnap, assault and false imprisonment.

Christopher Amis, prosecuting, said another man, Greg Little, was present but his role on the night was "largely as a driver". He is not on trial.

£1.9m deal

He said the brothers had fallen out with Mr Dhir after a £1.9m deal to buy the leasehold of a block of flats in Stoke Newington.

He said they believed Mr Dhir owed them a lot of money so they agreed to meet at his office in Wilmer Place on the evening of 20 April 2007 to sort matters out.

But Mr Amis said they were suddenly attacked by Mr Gojra and Mr Malone while Mr Dhir looked on.

Mr Amis said the men were partially stripped, had hessian sacks placed over their heads and plastic cable ties applied to their hands and feet.

He said bottles of alcohol were poured over the heads of the brothers, both devout Muslims.

Mr Amis said: "At one point a blowtorch was produced and lit and was held close to Mohammed Nawaz's face. Haq Nawaz was begging the men to stop attacking his brother."

He said Mohammed Nawaz was hit with a hammer and whipped on his testicles and blacked out from the pain.

Mr Amis said: "Mr Gojra accused them of messing Dhir about and owing him over £1m."

He said they then demanded £100,000 to let the brothers go and forced them to reveal the passwords to their computers and e-mails.

'Mock execution'

At around 10.30pm the brothers were bundled into a van which proceeded to drive out of London on the M1 and then the M25, said Mr Amis.

He said they arrived at Penton Hook Marina near Chertsey, Surrey, around midnight where a "mock execution" took place.

"Mohammed Nawaz was made to kneel down in a gravel area in the middle of nowhere. They threatened him and held something to his temple. He thought it was a gun and he thought he was going to be shot," said Mr Amis.

Eventually the brothers were freed in the early hours of the morning in the Gloucester Road area of west London.

Mr Amis said Mr Dhir accepted he was present during the incident in the office and during the night but denied he was involved or responsible for the assault, false imprisonment or kidnap.

"It may be that he will claim that others took matters into their own hands in a way that he had not foreseen or envisaged," he said.

He said Mr Gojra denied being in the office or in the van and said he was mistakenly identified by Mr Nawaz while Mr Malone denied he was "actively involved" in the false imprisonment, kidnap or assault.

The trial continues.

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