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Monday, 22 October, 2001, 12:03 GMT 13:03 UK
Road rage link to taxi driver's murder
Police in Bradford
Police have been talking with local communities
Detectives investigating the murder of an Asian taxi driver say he was involved in a scuffle with a motorist the day before he was killed.

West Yorkshire Police believe the "savage" shooting of Mohammed Basharat may be linked to a minor road accident just 24 hours earlier.

Mr Basharat, 33, a father-of-four, was shot dead on the evening of 20 October, in the office of the Bradford taxi firm where he worked.

Detectives have appealed for the two men involved in the scuffle, described as of African-Caribbean appearance, to come forward.

Death threat

Detective Superintendent Bob Bridgestock said Mr Basharat became involved in a minor scuffle with the driver of a Renault Clio on Friday evening after their wing mirrors touched.

As a result of the collision Mr Basharat was forced to "restrain" the driver of the Clio, who then threatened to kill him as he left the scene with a male companion.

Mr Bridgestock said: "As the two men left the scene on foot, leaving the vehicle behind, the driver shouted threats to Mohammed saying 'you don't know who you are messing with. I'm going to kill you'.

Mohammed Basharat
Mr Basharat: Forced to restrain car driver

"We want to know who these two men are and I would appeal to both of them to come forward and identify themselves and eliminate themselves from this savage murder.

"Or has one of these men gone to the extreme of carrying out this threat?

"If this was just a minor accident the day before, and it was just that, then I appeal to both men to come forward, but at this stage it is the only known motive for the death of Mohammed Basharat."

Police said the description of the gunman who killed Mr Basharat on Saturday was similar to that of the driver involved in the road accident on Friday evening.

They also said Mr Basharat, who had been a taxi driver for 14 years, was shot in the head twice.

Face masked

Mr Bridgestock said: "It was exact and clinical. No comments were made to Mohammed. He didn't stand a chance."

Detectives have ruled out a racial motive for the shooting.

As the gunman fled the Little Horton Private Hire office in Park Lane, Little Horton, Bradford, he pointed the weapon at other members of staff who later told police they heard the gun click.

The gunman is described as an African-Caribbean male, about 5ft 9ins tall,and slim.

He was wearing a dark coloured anorak, black jeans, and a balaclava or scarf to cover his face. He may also have been wearing gloves.


Click here to go to BBC Bradford Online
See also:

21 Oct 01 | England
Asian father murdered
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