Because he was argumentative and noisy, Mahsen Abdul Gawaii, a 39-year-old labourer from Yemen, was an unwelcome visitor at Faiz Khan’s lodging-house in Greaseborough Road, Sheffield. Finally Mr. Khan asked him not to come any more, but Gawaii turned up again on NOVEMBER 25th, 1956.
Trouble began when he switched on the radio and tuned-in to an Arabic programme. The Pakistani lodgers asked him to switch to an English-language programme, but he refused to do so. And when Mr. Khan asked him to leave, Gawaii dragged him out into the garden.
A fight began in which he stabbed the landlord, who hit him on the head with a broom handle. Then a m?lée developed involving six of the lodgers, and one of them, Gail Hussain Shah, 29, was stabbed in the neck and died in the kitchen.
Gawaii was also injured, and he went to the police. But after the lodgers were questioned, he was charged with Shah’s murder and with assaulting Faiz Khan.
At his trial several lodgers said they had seen him stab Gail Shah, but Gawaii claimed he was a victim of mistaken identity. On March 16th, 1957, he was convicted of murder, but a reprieve followed and in 1966 he was deported after serving nine years in prison.