Anya Horwood successfully prosecutes gangland killing case

February 22, 2018

Anya Horwood from Exchange Chambers, led by Ian Unsworth QC, prosecuted four men for the gangland killing of Joseph McKeever.

Joseph McKeever, 54, was found dead in Liverpool in June 2017 having suffered “a sustained and brutal attack”.

Jamie Grimes, 22, was jailed for life for murder. Darren Colecozy, 23, and Karl Kelly, 32, were given 22-year sentences for manslaughter.

Dylan Owen, 23, received six years for assisting an offender.

Colecozy, of no fixed address, and Kelly, of Snaefell Avenue, Liverpool, were also given concurrent sentences of 12 years for false imprisonment.

Mr McKeever was last seen at about 17:50 BST on 14 June with Grimes, Owen and two other men at MGM motors in Brecon Street.

He was subjected to a four-hour assault before being driven to a flat rented by Colecozy where further assaults took place.

The jury heard evidence that Mr McKeever was killed because he was wrongly suspected of cheating his associates out of a shipment of drugs from Spain which had been seized by the authorities.

During the assaults, Colecozy, a self-styled rapper also known as Capz, texted a friend and likened the violence to that seen in TV crime dramas, the court heard.

Rachael Barber from the Crown Prosecution Service said the level of violence was “truly sickening”.

“The evidence revealed that Mr McKeever had been subject to extreme torture before he died.

“We will never really know the true extent of his injuries as his body was so badly burnt when it was eventually recovered.”

Anya is a member of the criminal department at Exchange Chambers.