Rapper 'on verge of contract with Sony' jailed for life for murder of Birmingham teenager

Mr Yussuf stabbed his victim through the heart Credit: West Midlands Police

An aspiring rapper "on the verge of signing for Sony" has been jailed for life today for the murder of 18-year-old  Yahya Sharif.

Abdirahaman Yussuf had even written a rap song bragging about the killing of the teenager.

The 19-year-old stabbed the teen seconds after the victim got out of his car in Small Heath on 10 December 2021.

The victim tried to flee but was left with devastating injuries which were not survivable.

The motive for the attack is not entirely known, but Yussuf was later arrested by police who found an envelope featuring handwritten lyrics of a rap about the murder.

Words included "ching" and "flash" - slang to describe stabbings.

Yussuf, from Yardley, was convicted of murder by a jury at Birmingham Crown Court - now jailed for life, he will serve a minimum of 22 years.

'His death left a hole in my heart'

The death of Yahya has "destroyed" the life of his family, the court heard.

Muna Sharif, the mother of Yahya, said: "His death left a hole in my heart which can not be fixed.

"He was a nice, pleasant boy. He was always smiling and loved jokes.

"He looked after his own siblings. Yahya's death has affected everyone.

"I still don't know why my son was killed. My life has been destroyed. When he died I felt he was alive in my heart."

The jury heard how Mr Sharif was not carrying a knife and did not present as a threat at the time of the severe stabbing.

Icah Peart KC, defending, said the murder was "not premeditated."

He added: "It was committed on the spur of the moment. There is a doubt whether the court can be sure of an intention to kill.

"There is ample evidence that he was not holding the blade against his chest.

"It was committed in public and there was an attempt to dispose of the knife.

"He was educated at a local school. He did warehouse work.

"He was on the verge of signing a contract with Sony. He had no previous convictions."

'You paused and stabbed him in the chest'

During sentencing today, Mr Justice Choudhury said: "You and two of your friends had gathered outside a barber's shop.

"There was nothing to indicate there was any violence intended.

"Yahya was not carrying a knife. You were carrying one because it was your choice.

"Your group decided to head off to another barber.

"At around that time Yahya had parked... he was holding a mobile phone. You paused and stabbed him in the chest.

"The true reason may never be known. You said you had problems with his friends."

He added: "The moment you stabbed him can be seen in the CCTV footage.

"Your knife went through his heart, the force was severe.

"Paramedics came to the scene but he could not be saved. The cause of death was catastrophic blood loss.

"You claimed you did this in self-defence. The jury rejected your account.

"It is clear he presented no threat. He was walking to where he was going."

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