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Hunt for man who quit UK after delivery rider stabbing

Police release photo of 27-year-old they want to speak to in connection with investigation into death of Taki Boudhane

30 October, 2020 — By Helen Chapman

Police believe Nathan Smith flew to Switzerland and then moved on to Austria

DETECTIVES investigating a fatal stabbing in Finsbury Park have named a man they want to speak to.

Nathan Smith, 27, is believed to have left the UK immediately after Takieddine Boudhane’s death on January 3.

Officers think he flew to Switzerland and then moved on to Austria, but could now be even further afield.

Mr Boudhane, known as Taki, was stabbed in Charteris Road near the junction with Lennox Road.

As they circulated an image of Mr Smith, police said they had wanted to speak to him since January 4 but did not want to jeopardise their investigation by naming him earlier.

Detective Chief Inspector Neil John said: “The message at this time is the case is not closed. This is a staged investigation. Everything that has been done is what I believe to be right. The family has been kept updated throughout this.”

The Met Police last issued an appeal for information in August. Mr Boudhane’s family said they wanted more information to be in the public domain.

Takieddine Boudhane

Takieddine Boudhane

DCI John said: “In an ideal scenario maybe, we could tell everybody everything, but no one is going to want somebody to get off something on the technicality.”

Mr Boudhane’s brother Islam said: “It is still very difficult for our family. Nothing has changed. We just want justice.”

The Met is now offering a substantial reward of up to £10,000 for information leading to the identification, arrest and prosecution of the person responsible for Taki’s death. DCI John said there were 18 detectives on his team.

He said: “It’s fairly unusual that in the amount of time that has gone that we haven’t made an arrest and it is fairly unusual for London-based individuals to flee abroad. He was born in the UK. It’s bizarre.

“There are people who are wanted for years, but I’m hoping that’s not going to be the case for this one.”

He added: “We were surprised back in March, April, May, when the UK and a lot of Europe were in lockdown, how an individual was able to fare themselves.”

Taki’s mother Saida Boudhane and brother Islam with close friend Zakaria Gherabi at the scene of the stabbing

Police say they are working with the National Crime Agency and have also issued a European Arrest Warrant.

They suspect that Mr Smith has been travelling around Europe.

He is described as a white male, 6ft 3ins and of slim build, with dark hair. He usually has a dark beard although this may have been shaved off.

He also has a tattoo on his right forearm reading “count your blessings”.

Police say Mr Smith had been due to start a job in plumbing on the Monday following the incident.

Taki, 30, was working as a delivery driver on his motorbike when he was involved in a traffic altercation

The incident escalated before Taki was stabbed.

Mr Boudhane’s mother Saida said: “Whoever did this horrible crime didn’t kill just my son Taki, but they killed our entire family. All I want now is justice for Taki.”

Anyone with information, should call the police’s incident room on 0208 358 0100.

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