Page last updated at 12:22 GMT, Friday, 13 November 2009

Kinsella killer loses appeal case

Juress Kika
Kika was on the run from police when Ben was stabbed

One of the killers of 16-year-old Ben Kinsella has lost his appeal to have his sentence reduced.

Ben, the brother of EastEnders actress Brooke Kinsella, was stabbed 11 times as he fled from a fight in Islington, north London, in June 2008.

Juress Kika, 19, from London, was one of three men ordered to serve a minimum of 19 years in prison for murder.

Judges at the Court of Appeal rejected an argument on behalf of Kika that his sentence was "manifestly excessive".

Ben's father George said: "We are really pleased with the outcome today."

His mother Deborah added: "We would like to thank the three judges."

On the run

Kika, Jade Braithwaite, 18, and Michael Alleyne, 20, all from London, were convicted of murder at the Old Bailey in June.

Ben Kinsella
Ben Kinsella was stabbed 11 times in five seconds

After the trial it emerged Kika was on the run from police at the time of the murder, following a robbery in which a man was stabbed nine days earlier.

Ben had been to a bar with friends to celebrate the end of their GCSE exams when a row broke out on June 29 last year.

The trial heard he was stabbed in revenge for a claim Braithwaite had earlier been "disrespected".

The court heard that although the confrontation in the bar had nothing to do with him, Ben was chased along the street with other youngsters - and was stabbed to death when he stopped running.

Brought to justice

Lord Judge said Ben, who was stabbed 11 times, was a wholly innocent young man who had been hunted down.

He said: "We repeat and, until the message is heeded we shall go on repeating, that anyone who goes into a public place armed with a knife, or any other weapon, and uses it to kill or cause injury, and who is brought to justice, must anticipate condign punishment."

Lawyers for the defendants told the original trial the three killers had been served with letters from the prison authorities, following fears of retaliation.

The letters, asking inmates to discuss any fears or incidents, are given to prisoners who are likely to be targets of retribution.

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