A Moroccan asylum seeker committed a terror attack when he murdered a pensioner in the street in “revenge” for the Israel-Hamas conflict, a judge has ruled.

Ahmed Alid, 45, has been jailed for life with a minimum term of 45 years for stabbing Terence Carney, 70, six times in Hartlepool town centre on October 15 – eight days after Hamas attacked Israel.

Minutes earlier he attempted to murder his housemate, Christian convert and former bodybuilder Javed Nouri, by breaking into his bedroom and hacking at him while he slept.


Alid shouted “Allahu Akbar” – “God is great” – during the attack at the Home Office-approved asylum seekers’ accommodation before fleeing into the street, still armed with a knife.

Doorbell camera footage showed Mr Carney, who was out walking in the town centre, cry out “No, no” as he was stabbed by the stranger.

Prosecutors at Teesside Crown Court said it was not a frenzied attack but a deliberate attempt to target Mr Carney’s body repeatedly before he walked off, leaving his victim for dead.

Ahmed Alid court caseAhmed Alid, 45, murdered Terence Carney, 70, in Hartlepool town centre (Counter Terrorism Policing North East/PA)

In a holding cell at Middlesbrough police station after his arrest, Alid launched into a speech in Arabic saying that “Allah willing, Gaza would return to be an Arab country” and how he would have continued his “raid” if his hands had not been injured.

Alid, who strongly disapproved of Mr Nouri’s conversion to Christianity, said God was “displeased” with those who went astray.

The judge Mrs Justice Cheema-Grubb told Alid he had “hoped to frighten the people of Britain and undermine the freedoms they enjoy” when he murdered Mr Carney in a terrorist attack.

She said the attack on Mr Nouri was “an attempt to punish him for converting to Christianity”.

Mr Carney’s wife Patricia Carney said her husband went out walking early every morning because he enjoyed the peace and quiet on the streets.

In a statement read to the court during the sentencing hearing, Mrs Carney said: “Tess was doing what he had always done and enjoyed doing – he was taking a walk on a street he believed to be safe and a chance encounter with this man ended his life.”


She said she had been with Mr Carney from a young age and although they had been living separately for a few years, they were “still very much together”.

Mrs Carney’s statement said she can no longer go into town because it is “too painful” to be near the spot where her husband was murdered.

“From that day on, my life would be forever changed. I don’t feel anything anymore,” she said.

Mr Nouri, 31, said that since the attack, he does not “trust anyone or anything” and “all thoughts and feelings I had of being in a safe country have gone”.

His statement added: “I would expect to be arrested and killed in my home country for converting to Christianity but I did not expect to be attacked in my sleep here.

“How is it possible for someone to destroy someone’s life because of his religion?”

Mr Nouri said he now struggles with mental health problems and has had to move cities, losing all his friends.

Mrs Justice Cheema-GrubbMrs Justice Cheema-Grubb said Alid had committed terrorist offences (PA)

He added: “I want to tell Ahmed: You are a weak person, because of your religion you attack someone in deep sleep and an old man who struggled to walk.”

During Alid’s trial, jurors heard his housemates noticed he had watched a lot of coverage of the Hamas attacks on Israel and began carrying a knife.

Concerned, Mr Nouri complained to housing bosses, the Home Office and Cleveland Police, and a manager warned Alid to behave or risk being thrown out.

During his police interview the day after the murder, Alid said he launched his attacks because “Israel had killed innocent children”.

Jonathan Sandiford KC, prosecuting, told the court: “In other words, he said he had committed the attempted murder of Javed Nouri and the murder of Mr Carney in revenge for what he believed to be the killing of children by Israel.

“He swore by Allah that if he had had a machine gun and more weapons, he would have killed more victims.”

Alid admitted Mr Carney was “innocent”, justifying the attack by saying Britain had created the “Zionist entity” of Israel and should make them leave, adding: “They killed children and I killed an old man.”

During questioning, Alid began to get agitated and got into a struggle with two female detectives, one of whom pressed a panic button that did not work.

The situation was so frightening, Alid’s own solicitor rang 999 to ask for help, before officers were able to force entry into the room and subdue him.

Ahmed Alid court caseAhmed Alid attempted to kill his housemate, a Christian convert (Counter Terror Police/PA)

Alid denied murder, attempted murder and assaulting the two officers, claiming he did carry out the stabbings but without intention to kill or cause serious harm.

He was found guilty of all four charges last month.

Mrs Justice Cheema-Grubb ruled Alid had committed terrorist offences when he murdered Mr Carney and attempted to murder Mr Nouri.

She said due to time spent on remand he would serve 44 years and 52 days in prison.

The judge said he had waited to assault Mr Nouri when he was “asleep and vulnerable”, and that “the life he had started to build in this country was shattered by what happened”.

Mrs Justice Cheema-Grubb said Alid then “attacked an unarmed and elderly man who was unable to defend himself”.

The judge told Alid the jury had “seen through (his) lies” after he claimed the explanations he gave to the police had been mistranslated and that political and religious causes were not his actual motivation.

She said psychiatric reports had found no evidence of psychosis “or any other serious mental illness” in Alid.

She said he was deemed to have a “minor mental illness” called an adjustment disorder which would have affected his judgment and was caused by pressures including his tension with Mr Nouri, the “drawn out” decision of his asylum application, and the “emotional impact on his religious sensibilities” of Israel’s response to the Hamas attack.

The judge said this offered “very limited mitigation” as it was not sufficiently linked to “such a serious level of violence”.