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Last Updated: Friday, 7 October 2005, 16:08 GMT 17:08 UK
Killer bully given life sentence
Benjamin Durao
Benjamin Durao was killed trying to protect his 13-year-old stepson
A 16-year-old has been given a life sentence for murdering the stepfather of a boy he had been bullying.

An order banning the naming of Marcus Gabadan was lifted by an Old Bailey judge, who described the attack as gratuitous and unprovoked.

Benjamin Durao, 35, was stabbed through the heart after confronting two teenagers in Brixton, south London, last December.

The judge said Gabadan must spend at least 10 years in custody.

Mr Durao's 13-year-old stepson had originally been threatened by another bully, a 14-year-old, who demanded a computer game and 20 from him.

Attempt to intimidate

When he refused to steal the money from his mother, the boy was hit and told his stepfather would be killed.

The following day the bully sat outside the boy's house "to intimidate him", the trial heard.

He later returned to the flat, with Gabadan for back-up.

Mr Durao, described as a hard-working painter and decorator, tried to call police on a number he had been given after complaining about the bullying.

This was a gratuitous, unprovoked attack on a man who was trying to stop his son being bullied
Judge James Stewart

But the line was engaged and he headed outside "understandably upset" that his stepson had been bullied.

He grabbed the younger boy's coat and it was then that Gabadan stabbed him.

Gabadan, of Brixton, south London, claimed to have used the knife in self-defence.

The 14-year-old, convicted of blackmailing Mr Durao's stepson during a prolonged campaign of bullying, was remanded in custody for reports.

Passing sentence, Judge James Stewart said: "It is a tragedy that a man cannot go out of his house in this day and age to remonstrate with a bully and not find himself dead.

"This was a gratuitous, unprovoked attack on a man who was trying to stop his son being bullied."

The scene of Benjamin Durao's murder

Father died 'defending his son'
13 Sep 05 |  London

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