A taxi driver has admitted murdering a newsagent in a brutal stabbing outside his shop in Glasgow, Scotland.
Mr Shah, 40, who ran a convenience store in the city’s Shawlands area, died following an attack by 32-year-old Tanveer Ahmed on March 24.
He was stabbed 30 times with a kitchen knife and his head was stamped on in the vicious assault outside the shop, hours after wishing his Christian friends a ‘Happy Easter’ on Facebook.
Ahmed, from Bradford in West Yorkshire, pleaded guilty at the High Court in Glasgow to murdering the respected businessman, who was described by his family as a ‘brilliant’ man.
The court heard the attack was motivated because Mr Shah belonged to the Ahmadi sect of Islam, which believes that founder Mirza Ghulam Ahmad is the messiah and a prophet, which ‘offended Ahmed’s faith’.
Judge Lady Rae told Ahmed, who will be sentenced on August 9: ‘This was a truly despicable crime, motivated, it seems, by your sense of offence at a man’s expression of his religious beliefs, which differ from yours.
‘Let me be clear – there’s no justification whatsoever for what you did.’
The court heard that Mr Shah was a ‘well-known and clearly much-loved member of the community’.
Prosecutor Mr McSporran stressed that the Facebook posting wishing Christians a happy Easter had no bearing on the crime, however.
The court heard that Ahmed, a Sunni Muslim, drove from Bradford to Glasgow on March 24 and engaged in a discussion with Mr Shah at his store before pulling out a knife and attacking the shopkeeper.
CCTV footage of Mr Shah’s murder from inside and outside the shop was shown to judge Lady Rae and could be seen by members of the public in the court room.
Mr McSporran told the court the pair conversed ‘intensely‘ in Urdu.
The accused, having apparently not received the response he was looking for, reaches into the robes he is wearing and removes a knife with which he attacks Asad Shah, moving behind the counter to do so.
Mr Shah can be seen attempting to flee outside, where the ‘determined‘ attack continues despite attempts from Mr McFadyen and Mr Shah’s brother to intervene.
Whilst the attack continued, with the accused kneeling on the victim, pinning him to the ground, Stephen McFadyen bravely reached for the knife and grabbed it from the accused, running across the road and placing it in bushes out of harm’s way.
The accused then began punching, kicking and stamping with full force on the prone body of Asad Shah, who was long past being in any position to defend himself.
Many blows were delivered to his head and face, despite Athar’s repeated pleas for him to stop.
The attack ceased suddenly and the accused walked calmly to a bus shelter nearby where he sat, head bowed as if in prayer.
A passing GP and nurse attempted to help Mr Shah, who was taken to hospital but died shortly before 10pm.