A gang member and drill rapper, Rashid Gedel, has been convicted of the murder of 22-year-old Sven Badzak in a case of mistaken identity. Alongside Gedel, 22-year-old Shiroh Ambersley was also convicted of the murder. The trial revealed that Gedel had previously been convicted four times for possessing a knife.
The incident occurred on February 6, 2021, when a gang from the South Kilburn estate in northwest London, who were targeting rival youths, attacked Badzak and his friend who were walking back from a supermarket. Badzak, an aspiring lawyer, suffered fatal injuries and passed away. His friend, who was also attacked, survived.
During the trial, a third man named Harvey Canavan pleaded guilty to manslaughter, indicating his involvement in the crime. After more than 25 hours of deliberation, Gedel and Ambersley were acquitted of the attempted murder of Badzak’s friend but were convicted of unlawfully wounding him.
Despite Gedel’s denial of being part of the gang that night, evidence surfaced linking him to a video performed by Lil Krafty, a rapper associated with South Side Killy, a drill crew from South Kilburn. The South Kilburn gang has a longstanding rivalry with the Harrow Road Boys (HRB) based on the Mozart estate.
The trial revealed Gedel’s history of knife-related convictions. He was first convicted at the age of 13, and subsequently convicted three more times. Even after his fourth conviction, which resulted in a brief prison sentence, Gedel armed himself with a knife again.
During the trial, CCTV footage was shown of Gedel entering a bakery and seemingly scouting for potential victims. Moments later, Gedel and his gang encountered Badzak and his friend, who were targeted due to mistaken identity. Badzak was fatally stabbed, while his friend managed to escape with injuries.
Pathologist Dr. Charlotte Randall conducted a post-mortem examination, which confirmed that the cause of Badzak’s death was a stab wound to the heart. The injured friend was able to reach a nearby Tesco store for help.
Throughout the trial, Gedel’s history of knife carrying was brought to light, leading the prosecutor to label him a “habitual carrier of knives.” Gedel, however, claimed that he had decided to stop carrying a knife after his last conviction in 2020, after witnessing others serving long sentences for similar offenses.
Jasna, Badzak’s mother, expressed her disbelief in Gedel’s claims, stating that he had boasted on Snapchat after her son’s murder. She highlighted how Gedel had received a video of Badzak lying dead or dying and was known to associate with the South Kilburn area.
The trial also shed light on the ongoing rivalry between South Kilburn and HRB, which has a history spanning over a decade. One particularly tragic incident occurred in May 2017 when Mohanna Abdhou, an innocent bystander, was killed by a stray bullet intended for South Kilburn gang members.
Although not mentioned during Gedel’s trial, The Epoch Times discovered a photograph of Badzak with a drill rapper associated with the Mozart estate posted on the rapper’s Instagram shortly after the murder. The rapper expressed his condolences and recognized Badzak as a fan of his music.
Gedel, Ambersley, and Canavan are set to be sentenced later this summer. The convictions serve as a reminder of the devastating consequences of gang-related violence and the urgent need for preventative measures.