A man who killed 18-year-old Meschak dos Santos Cornelio in Enfield on New Year's Eve, 2017 has today (21 November) been found guilty of manslaughter.
Gaille Bola, 22 (16.07.96) of Stonebridge Road, N15 was found guilty of Meschak's manslaughter at Blackfriars Crown Court by a unanimous jury verdict.
The court heard how police were called by London Ambulance Service (LAS) at around 11:30hrs on Sunday, 31 December to an address in Larmans Road, Enfield to reports of a male stabbed.
Meschak was found injured and treated by LAS at the scene before being airlifted to an east London hospital - despite medical treatment he died at 20:28hrs.
When officers attended the scene they found Class A drugs and equipment often used with the cutting and bagging of drugs.
Intelligence also suggested that the victim had been running county lines for Bola, but had decided to set up his own line, which caused friction between the two men.
A witness who was in the property at the time of the arrest told officers that shortly before 11:30hrs, Meschak and a friend were present in the flat cutting and bagging drugs, when three suspects entered the address demanding the 'drugs line' phone from Meschak.
Meschak knew the males as he voluntarily buzzed them up via the flat intercom. An attack ensued resulting in him being punched in the head and stabbed in the chest. The suspects made off with the drugs phone, plus other phones, cash and drugs.
The witness recognised the 'leader' of this trio of suspects, and the male who punched the victim, to be the main drug dealer in the area named "G" (Gaille Bola).
Bola handed himself into police at Wood Green Police Station at 18:00hrs on Monday, 8 January.
He was charged on Tuesday, 9 January and appeared in custody at Highbury Magistrates' Court on Wednesday, 10 January.
He was found not guilty of murder after a trial at the Old Bailey in July this year, but the jury could not reach a verdict on manslaughter. He was found guilty today, after re-trial, at Blackfriars Crown Court.
Detective Sergeant Brett Hagen, from the Met's Homicide and Major Crime Command, said:
"Whilst most of us were likely celebrating on New Year's Eve, a young man's life was taken by a violent, vicious and dangerous individual who did everything he could to protect and expand his county lines drugs business.
"Bola went into the property that morning intending to steal a drugs line mobile phone from Meschak and knowing he would use violence in order to steal it. As a result of his actions another young man is dead.
"Nothing can ever bring Meschak back, but hopefully his family can take comfort in the fact that the person responsible will spend a number of years of his life behind bars."
Bola will be sentenced at the same court on 11 January 2019.