Glasgow shopkeeper’s murderer jailed for life

Bradford taxi driver told he will serve minimum of 27 years for religiously motivated killing

Asad Shah
Asad Shah, murdered in an attack at his shop in Shawlands, Glasgow in March this year

The murderer of Glasgow shopkeeper Asad Shah has been jailed for life, and told he will serve a minimum of 27 years, after he admitted killing Mr Shah in a religiously motivated attack earlier this year.

Taxi driver Tanveer Ahmed, a 32-year-old man from Bradford in Yorkshire, had travelled to Glasgow where he stabbed 40-year-old Mr Shah outside his shop in Shawlands on the south side of Glasgow on 24 March.

In a statement issued through lawyers after the attack but before he had registered a plea in the murder trial Ahmed said he had carried out the act because Mr Shah had “disrespected the messenger of Islam”.

Passing sentence at the High Court in Glasgow, Judge Lady Rae said the killing had been an “appalling display of merciless violence” and a “brutal, barbaric, horrific crime” which she described as religiously motivated.

Ahmed is reported to have raised his fist and shouted in Arabic as he was led to holding cells after sentencing.

Mr Shah was an Ahmadi. Members of the Ahmadiyya Community regard themselves as Muslim but some other Muslims view certain Ahmadi beliefs as non-Islamic.

After the murder, Mr Shah was praised by members of the local community. Neighbours quoted in Glasgow newspaper reports described him as a kind man, of great wisdom who was a huge part of the community.

Both the Scottish Grocers Federation and the National Federation of Retail Newsagents expressed their shock and horror at the murder. And local people set up a crowd-funding initiative Support for Mr Shah, which raised more than £100,000.

Mr Shah’s family released a statement after the attack in which they said: “On Thursday evening (24th March), a beloved husband, son, brother and everyone’s friend, Asad Shah, was taken away from us by an incomprehensible act. We are devastated by this loss.

“A person’s religion, ethnicity, race, gender or socioeconomic background never mattered to Asad. He met everyone with the utmost kindness and respect because those are just some of the many common threads that exist across every faith in our world. He was a brilliant man, recognising that the differences between people are vastly outweighed by our similarities. And he didn’t just talk about this, he lived it each and every day, in his beloved community of Shawlands and his country of Scotland.”