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Man Who Murdered Wife After Blaming Their Teenage Son Jailed

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A man who murdered his wife – and blamed their teenage son for the killing – has been jailed for at least 29 years.

Amidu Koroma stabbed 46-year-old community nurse Mariam Kamara four times in the face, neck and chest with a kitchen knife as she slept in her bed, before using petrol to start a fire to hide what he had done in the early hours of 24 January, 2022.

He then blamed their 19-year-old son Ishmael who was asleep in the house at the time – wrongly accusing him of being mentally disturbed and re-enacting a scene from the Netflix thriller, You.

Koroma, who had a child with another woman, was found guilty of Ms Kamara’s murder and arson at the family home in Railton Road, Brixton, south London, following a trial at the Old Bailey.

Image: Mariam Kamara was stabbed to death at the family home. Pic: Metropolitan Police On Monday, Judge Rebecca Poulet KC jailed the 48-year-old delivery driver for life with a minimum term of 29 years with a concurrent sentence of seven years for arson.

Jurors heard the couple’s relationship was “toxic” and Ms Kamara had repeatedly expressed fears to friends that he was going to kill her.

The court also heard Koroma feared she would leave him for a man she had struck up an intimate friendship with in Sierra Leone.

A post-mortem examination concluded Ms Kamara had died from stab wounds to the neck and chest before the fire started.

The judge told Koroma he had planned the murder because he did not want Ms Kamara to travel to Sierra Leone.

She told him: “You had planned to burn her body and thereby destroy the evidence of her injuries but very careful investigation and your own inconsistent statements have exposed your crimes and your undoubted responsibility for them.”

The judge said Koroma blaming his son was a “particularly cruel and unpleasant” aspect of the case, while another aggravating feature included the fact the killing was carried out in a background of abuse and “terrifying threats”.

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She added that contrary to Koroma’s claims, Ishmael was a “typical teenager” and Ms Kamara was a “deeply caring and responsible mother”.

In a police interview, Koroma claimed he had been asleep on the sofa and was woken by a smoke alarm at 3am.

During the trial, he changed his account saying Ishmael had woken him up downstairs and he had initially lied to protect him.

Under cross-examination, Ishmael denied being unstable and killing his mother after having a bad parents’ evening.

In a victim impact statement, Ishmael, who is now studying accountancy at university, spoke of how much he missed his mother and had been deeply affected by her death, now finding himself unable to trust anyone.

Detective Chief Inspector Chris Wood, of the Metropolitan Police, who led the investigation, said after Koroma’s conviction: “This was a brutal murder and an appalling act of violence against a woman.”