Wicked Way

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The grieving family of Yousef Makki have told of their agony and appealed for new information on the second anniversary of his tragic death.

Grammar school pupil Yousef, 17, was stabbed in the heart with an illegal flick knife during a fight in the upmarket village of Hale Barns, Cheshire, on March 2, 2019.

His family said they want answers from the two young men involved in his death but have had nothing but “stone cold silence” from their families.

Yousef’s friend and schoolmate Joshau Molnar, then 17, was cleared of murder and manslaughter after claiming he had acted in self-defence after Yousef pulled a knife on him, though prosecutors said there was no evidence Yousef had a knife.

Two years on, Yousef’s family believe there is more to the case and there could be information out there that hasn’t been shared with police and could trigger a fresh investigation.

In a statement released by Yousef’s older sister Jade Akoum, the family claim they haven’t been contacted by the families of Molnar or Adam Chowdhary, who brought the knife that Yousef was stabbed with, despite reaching out to them.

They said they have been left “destroyed” by the death of “working class” Yousef, who wanted to be a heart surgeon, while Molnar and Chowdhary “remain free to live their lives, protected by their families’ privilege”.

They also accused the authorities of failing to be “accountable and transparent” with the family.

Molnar was given a 16-month detention order after admitting possessing an offensive weapon and perverting the course of justice by lying to police. He was released before the first anniversary of Yousef’s death last year.

Chowdhary, another friend and classmate who was also 17 at the time, was acquitted of perverting the course of justice, but handed a four-month detention order after admitting possession of a flick knife.

Yousef, who was from a single-parent Anglo-Lebanese family from Burnage, south Manchester, had won a scholarship to the prestigious £12,000-a-year Manchester Grammar School.

He was killed in a leafy village popular with company directors and footballers.

Molnar’s trial heard the friends but had fallen out over a botched attempt to rob a drug dealer.

Chowdhary had purchased the knife online and brought it to the fight, the court heard.

In May last year, Yousef’s family suffered another tragedy when his mum Debbie Makki, 55, died almost 14 months after the fatal stabbing.

The family said at the time that her mental and physical health had “deteriorated dramatically over the past year” and “her heart was broken” following her son’s death.

Yousef’s family say they are hoping 2021 will bring the closure they are seeking.

The family said on Tuesday: “There are many things we wanted and hoped to be able to say on the second anniversary of our beloved Yousef’s death.

“We hoped to be able to say we better understood the truth of how and why Yousef’s life tragically came to an end on 2nd March 2019.

“We hoped to have been contacted by Joshua Molnar or Adam Chaudhary and provided more insight into the night of his killing.

“We hoped that the authorities involved in investigating Yousef’s death would have gone on to be more accountable and transparent with us.

“Unfortunately, however, 2020 was not the year we felt we were due.

“Since our last press conference in March 2020, we have had to endure a second year of stone cold silence from the two boys involved in Yousef’s killing – his two friends Joshua Molnar and Adam Chaudhary who he attended Manchester Grammar School with – which we hoped would have been long since ceased after our many attempts to approach dialogue with both boys and their families.

“We had hoped a sense of nostalgic loyalty might have prevailed, but it has not.

“Joshua Molnar and Adam Chaudhary remain free to live their lives, protected by their families’ privilege.

“However, the family of Yousef, a working class boy from humble beginnings who was on track to become a heart surgeon, has been left destroyed by his death.

“The then sudden death of our mum, Debbie Makki, has only compounded our grief and frustration to understand what happened to Yousef that night – and we hold on to the hope that by the end of 2021, we will gain some closure.

“By now the inquest into Yousef’s death should be beginning – but instead, due to the pandemic, this has been postponed to late 2021.

“With an overriding sense of having been let down time and time again, our family have decided that at this time, on the second anniversary of Yousef’s killing, we are left with no choice but to appeal directly to the public for any new information that can help us better understand the events surrounding Yousef’s death.

“Our family believes that there is still information that has not come to light and therefore we are asking that anyone who has not yet come forward who has specific information or knowledge of the events leading up to Yousef’s death to please get in touch with our campaign via: [email protected]

“As always, we thank Yousef’s many friends and supporters for their unwavering support in securing justice for Yousef.”

A Greater Manchester Police spokesperson said: “We will always consider any new information which may come to light and act upon it as appropriate in collaboration with HM Coroner and the Crown Prosecution Service.

“We will continue to support Yousef’s family and are thinking of them on the anniversary of his death.”

In October 2019, Molnar’s divorced parents, company director Mark Molnar and former company director Stephanie Molnar, told the Sunday Times that their son was still haunted by memories of Youself dying in front of him.

The wealthy couple said their son was “incredibly remorseful” and described him as “a normal, typical teenage lad”.

Molnar’s family had hired a Manchester-based publicity firm.

Afterwards, Yousef’s mum Debbie blasted Molnar’s parents as “shameless” and being “more worried about tainting their reputations”, slamming the national newspaper interview as a ‘PR offensive’.