A refugee fuelled by a desire to kill English people has been convicted of attempted murder after armed with a knife he attacked people at random in Thornton Heath, a court has heard. 

Samiulahaq Akbari, 32, an Afghan refugee, who was living on Brigstock Road, stalked the aisles of Tesco Extra on London Road, looking for a targets after threatening customers in a kebab shop and later drinkers in a nearby pub.

 Footage shows him as he walked behind Nicholas Speight on January 8 before tapping him on the shoulder and asking his nationality? When he replies that he was from the UK, Akbari swung a 10-inch knife at him.

Akbari, was found guilty following a week long trial of attempted murder and threatening another with an offensive weapon and will be sentenced at the Old Bailey on July 26.

The jury heard how on the night of 8 January Akbari called his cousin while heavily drunk at 8.45pm and said he wanted to “kill English people”. 

After the phone call his concerned cousin travelled to Thornton Heath to check on him. They both went to a fast food shop and while Akbari was inside his cousin contacted police. When his cousin tried to persuade Akbari to go home, he ran off. Officers met the cousin nearby and search began to trace down Akbari.

Shortly after Akbari entered a kebab shop on London Road and approached two customers asking them were they were from. When they didn’t answer, Akbari walked behind the counter and took a large kitchen knife which he wielded in a customer’s face.

Akbari then left the shop with the knife and entered the Plough-On-The-Pond Public House in search of further victims. After asking customers in the pub where they were from he again lunged towards a group with the knife. The group were able to defend themselves so he backed off and left. He then attacked Mr Speight who luckily managed to jump backwards so the knife narrowly missed him. Officers arrived at Tesco shortly and detained Akbari in nearby in a garden.

Detective Sergeant Tim Conroy, said: “Unsurprisingly those targeted have been left shaken and I hope that today’s conviction will go some way to give a degree of closure to them.”