Page last updated at 15:54 GMT, Monday, 29 March 2010 16:54 UK

Twelve youths remanded over boy's murder at Victoria

Sofyen Belamouadden
Sofyen Belamouadden was a pupil at Henry Compton School in Fulham

Twelve youths accused of murdering a 15-year-old boy at Victoria Underground station in central London have been remanded in custody.

Sofyen Belamouadden, from Acton, west London, suffered multiple stab wounds in an attack on Thursday evening.

The boys, all 16 or 17 years old, appeared at West London Youth Court.

Earlier on Monday, police arrested a girl and three more teenage boys, bringing the total number of arrests in connection with the stabbing to 24.

Sofyen was stabbed several times in the chest when he was set on by a mob at Victoria Tube station.

The attack began on steps leading into the station in Terminus Place and ended in a booking hall for the Circle and District Tube lines.

The stabbing happened during the rush hour, at about 1720 GMT.

Clive Coleman
Legal affairs analyst

The doctrine of joint enterprise allows entire groups of people to be prosecuted for murder even though they may have played very different roles in the killing.

Most famously it was used in 1952 to convict Derek Bentley of the shooting of a police officer. The words 'let him have it' allegedly said by Bentley to his accomplice Christopher Craig, forming part of the evidence of joint enterprise.

In a normal murder case the prosecution has to prove that the defendant intended to kill or cause really serious bodily harm. In joint enterprise murder the test is far looser. The prosecution only need to prove that the defendant foresaw that another member of the group might kill or, at its lowest level of culpability, might cause serious bodily harm.

Sofyen was a pupil at the Henry Compton School in Fulham.

He played football for Acton Garden Village Youth Sunday League team in West London and for Chelsea Kicks, a scheme run by the Premier League club for young people in deprived areas.

A spokesman for the club described the teenager as a "talented footballer" and a "valued participant" on the scheme.

The 12 youths who have been remanded, four aged 16 and eight aged 17, are all from south London.

They are due to appear on Wednesday at the Old Bailey, where bail applications will be heard.

One 16-year-old defendant will not be applying for bail and so will not appear, his solicitor indicated.

All 12 will then reappear before West London Youth Court on 6 April before a further committal hearing on 27 April.

Two 15-year-old youths, four 16 year olds and a 17 year old have been released on bail and a man in his 30s will face no further action.

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Twelve charged with boy's murder
29 Mar 10 |  London

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