- The deportation of Yaqub Ahmed was dramatically halted by plane passengers
- The man, 29, was being returned to Somalia after being involved in a gang-rape
- Passengers complained he was being separated from his family in the UK
A Somalian whose deportation from Britain was dramatically halted after airline passengers staged a mutiny demanding his release can be exposed today as a convicted gang rapist who was being kicked out of the country because of his sickening crime.
Officials escorting Yaqub Ahmed on a flight from Heathrow to Turkey were forced to abandon his deportation when around a dozen holidaymakers who felt sorry for him angrily intervened shortly before take-off.
At one stage during the astonishing episode, filmed on mobile phones, one traveller complained: ‘They’re separating him from his family’, while others chanted ‘take him off the plane’.
When harassed security guards caved in and walked 29-year-old Ahmed off the Turkish Airlines flight, he was seen thanking those on board for their support as they cheered and applauded.
One person was heard declaring: ‘You’re free, man!’
Yaqub Ahmed, 29, is one of a gang of rapists who brutally assaulted a young girl. The 16-year-old victim was gang-raped in a flat in New Orleans Walk in Crouch End on August 10
Passengers helped Ahmed get kicked off the plane as he resisted being deported by the Home Office after serving a prison sentence for gang rape
But the passengers who thought they were doing a good deed were unaware that the man they were defending had been sentenced to nine years in jail for his part in a vicious gang rape of a teenage girl – and that another member of his gang later fought for Islamic State in Syria.
Today The Mail on Sunday can reveal how Ahmed and three other youths preyed on a 16-year-old stranger after she became separated from her friends during a night out in London’s Leicester Square, in August 2007.
In a planned attack, they lured her back to a flat in Crouch End, North London, by pretending her friends were waiting for her there – then gang-raped her.
The gang, aged between 18 and 20, were caught when neighbours heard the girl’s cries for help and rang police.
All four men denied rape, despite DNA evidence. They were found guilty at Wood Green Crown Court and each jailed for nine years. Police detective Emma Bird said at the time: ‘The sentences given out by the judge reflect the seriousness of this offence.’