A BOSCOMBE man was found stabbed to death in his flat after rowing with a former employee, an inquest has heard.
Ibrahim Yousef, who owned the Five Star Carwash in Gloucester Road, died in his home following a violent argument with Valerijs Grigorjevs, police believe.
The suspect, of Heathcote Road in Boscombe, died just hours afterwards in a head-on collision with an articulated lorry in Wiltshire.
This morning, during an inquest into the deaths of the two men, it was heard that a bloodied handprint – identified as that of Latvian national Mr Grigorjevs – was discovered on the wall above Mr Yousef’s bed.
Tawana Eastwood, a business partner of Mr Yousef, also told the inquest that Mr Grigorjevs had arranged for a 25-year-old Latvian woman to visit Mr Yousef and be his girlfriend.
“He (Mr Yousef) paid her ticket, paid her money, he was expecting her to arrive in the UK at the airport on October 11,” he said.
“It didn’t happen.”
One neighbour, who cannot be named, said she heard “thudding” coming from Mr Yousef's flat on the evening of October 10 last year.
“I heard, 'Give me my money, give me my money' in an aggressive tone,” she said, adding that although she had believed the voice to be that of Mr Yousef, she may be mistaken.
The neighbour added that she heard between 10 and 20 sounds over the course of around 10 minutes.
“The banging was like someone's head being banged on the floor,” she said.
A Toyota Yaris owned by Mr Yousef was taken by Mr Grigorjevs, 27, following the attack.
The vehicle was captured on CCTV camera in Hampshire and Wiltshire during the evening, although Detective Inspector Marcus Hester of Dorset Police told the inquest that it appeared to be travelling “aimlessly”.
Shortly after 6.30am following morning, the Toyota – travelling at speed on the wrong side of the road - struck a lorry driven by Brian Linham.
The driver, who has held a licence for 50 years without ever being involved in a road traffic collision, told the coroner that the car had “no reason at all” to be in his lane of the carriageway.
Police later attended Mr Yousef's home – believing him to be the driver of the car – but found his body lying on the floor wrapped in a duvet.
The 42-year-old, who was born in Iraq, had been stabbed five times and suffered blunt impact trauma to the head in the moments before his death.
Dorset Coroner Sheriff Payne said he found that Mr Yousef had been unlawfully killed.
He added that Grigorjevs, who made no attempt to brake before the Toyota veered sharply into the path of the lorry, may have been impaired by drugs.
A toxicology report conducted following his death found he had taken heroin, cocaine and amphetamines.
Witnesses had also reported seeing the small car “dangerously” overtaking a string of vehicles before the collision took place.
The coroner said: “If I am going to come to a verdict that Mr Grigorjevs effectively committed suicide by vehicle, I have to be sure that he did deliberately intend to do this, and I cannot be sure.”
He recorded a narrative verdict into the death.
Did row break out over unpaid wages?
DI Hester said Mr Yousef employed a “transient” work force, who were paid between £23 and £35 daily.
“He was known to work his staff hard and his management style was described as fairly dictatorial,” he said.
“It wouldn’t be unusual to expect something in the region of £20 to be paid for someone doing a day’s work. We know Mr Grigorjevs left the previous day. It may be, and it is only an assumption, that he was asking for his last day’s wages.
“I can say from the investigation that forensically, and considering all other evidence, Mr Yousef would have appeared to have died unnaturally and Mr Grigorjevs is responsible.”