Ipswich: Man kidnapped and tortured using boiling water and a hot iron, court told

Ipswich Crown Court

Ipswich Crown Court - Credit: Archant

Five men kidnapped, blindfolded and tortured an Ipswich man by twice pouring boiling water on him and putting a hot iron to his stomach, a court heard.

Gibril Seray-Wurie, of Lone Barn Court, Ipswich, Malachi Cavalho, of no fixed address, Ishmael O’Connor, of Nacton Crescent, Ipswich, and Ricky Greenwood, formerly of Ipswich, have denied a series of charges.

All pleaded not guilty at Ipswich Crown Court to robbing, kidnapping and causing grievous bodily harm to John Ugoani on March 4.

Seray-Wurie, 31, Cavalho, 27, and O’Connor, 24, deny burglary, assault and false imprisonment of Mr Ugoani, although Greenwood, 23, has admitted the charges. Seray-Wurie has also denied possession of a knife.

Samantha Leigh, prosecuting, said the motive for the alleged attack on Mr Ugoani, of Cemetery Road, Ipswich, was unclear, before adding: “There’s a hint this could well be about drugs.”

Mr Ugoani was said to have contacted O’Connor, who was known as ‘D’, to buy some cannabis.

At an arranged meeting in Bell Close, Ipswich, Cavalho and Seray-Wurie were said to have got into Mr Ugoani’s silver Mercedes and forced him to get into the back seat at knifepoint before taking him to a one-bedroomed flat in Purplett Street.

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Miss Leigh said: “The Crown says this was a planned and organised crime with all of the defendants having their roles and well aware of the purpose of the plan to kidnap, torture, and steal from Mr Ugoani.

“Once inside the flat he was told to sit on the floor. Although he shouted for help he recalls the windows were shut and music being played. He was told to be quiet otherwise he would be stabbed and killed.”

It is alleged the accused robbed Mr Ugoani of a watch, necklace and his partner’s handbag.

The jury heard Mr Ugoani was blindfolded, tied up and something was put in his mouth. A pillow case or something similar was put over his head.

At one stage he heard a kettle boiling. Mr Ugoani pulled off his blindfold to see Cavalho with the kettle, the court heard.

Miss Leigh said: “Hot water was poured over his body, while a hot iron being held by Mr O’Connor was held on his body.”

Subsequently boiling water was poured over Mr Ugoani for a second time.

At one stage Greenwood and another man Daniel Smith, 25, of Norwich prison - who has admitted kidnap, robbery, GBH, false imprisonment and burglary, went to Mr Ugoani’s home and stole jewellery, handbags, a laptop, a Playstation and games.

Greenwood returned to Purplett Street but struggled to get the password of the laptop to work. The court heard he threatened Mr Ugoani with the hot kettle again, saying “would you like to burn?”.

Mr Ugoani was eventually released after Seray-Wurie, who at one stage left the Purplett Street flat, returned.

Mr Ugoani needed hospital treatment for second-degree burns to his chest, stomach, and neck.

The trial continues.