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Last Updated: Friday, 13 February, 2004, 16:03 GMT
Life for murder of tycoon's son
Rizwan Alvi
Alvi was arrested in Canada and deported to Britain
A man who murdered a millionaire's son and stole his identity has been given a life sentence at the Old Bailey.

The victim, the son of a Pakistani tycoon, was beaten to death and his body dumped in a river in Surrey.

A gang then used his credit cards on a Las Vegas spending spree before heading to Australia, Dubai and Canada.

Model agency executive Rizwan Alvi, of Bayswater, central London, was ordered to serve at least 19 years on Friday after being convicted of the murder.

The rest of the gang, who were all linked to a central London modelling agency, have not been caught.

But police tracked down Alvi, who was arrested in Canada and deported to Britain.

Sentencing him Judge Richard Hawkins told Alvi: "I have to bear in mind that it was a planned murder for substantial gain."

This was a horrific crime committed by people the victim knew well
Detective Chief Inspector Martin Lee
The court heard the 27-year-old victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was on a visit to Britain when he was killed.

He had been heard arguing with Alvi after refusing to put money into his New York Looks business.

His body was found near a river in Hamm Court, Weybridge, Surrey a few hours after the murder on 16 December 2001.

Gang went on spending spree

The court heard attempts had been made to burn the body to conceal his identity, to give the gang time to use his documents and cards.

Prosecutor Michael Worsley QC told the court: "The circumstances are such that you may come to the conclusion that the body was tortured."

The gang went on a spending spree but fled abroad when the body was discovered - running up thousands of pounds on the victim's credit cards.

Mr Worsley said there were "scores and scores of transactions in each country amounting to many thousands of pounds".

The gang also tried to transfer 260,000 from his bank account - but he had changed his bank security password a few days before his death.

Outside court Detective Chief Inspector Martin Lee said: "This was a horrific crime committed by people the victim knew well and who he probably trusted and considered friends."

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