Criminal knifed man to death in fight over drugs months after being saved from deportation flight

27 February 2023, 12:09 | Updated: 27 February 2023, 12:32

Ernesto Elliott was sentenced to life in prison
Ernesto Elliott was sentenced to life in prison. Picture: Met Police/Twitter
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

A convicted criminal who avoided deportation on a Home Office charter flight to Jamaica following a series of legal challenges went on to commit murder, it has been revealed.

Ernesto Elliot, originally from Jamaica, was due to board a flight back to his country of origin in December 2020, but a series of challenges stopped the flight.

Elliot and his son Nico went on to murder 35-year-old Nathaniel Eyewu-Ago in south east London after they robbed drugs and cash from him months later in June 2021.

The duo have been jailed for a combined total of 48 years after they were convicted of murder and robbery.

Ernesto Elliott
Ernesto Elliott. Picture: Met Police

Priti Patel, who was Home Secretary at the time of Elliot's planned deportation, said his case shows why it was important to defy "do-gooders" who want to block deportations.

A number of high-profile celebrities and politicians supported the campaign to stop the deportation flight, including supermodel Naomi Campbell, actress Thandiwe Newton and historian David Olusoga.

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Elliott and 22 other criminals submitted last-minute appeals against their deportation, including human rights claims, meaning they were not deporting to Jamaica, the Daily Mail reported.

In total, the group had been sentenced to a combined 156 years in prison. After avoiding deportation, Elliott was said to have been released within weeks.

Naomi Campbell backed the challenge to stop the deportation flight to Jamaica
Naomi Campbell backed the challenge to stop the deportation flight to Jamaica. Picture: Getty

A Home Office spokesman said: “Foreign national offenders who exploit our system and commit crimes here in the UK will face the full force of the law, including deportation at the earliest opportunity for those eligible.

“While legal challenges can frustrate immediate deportation, we remain resolute in our commitment to deport those who abuse our hospitality.”

A number of people witnessed the stabbing of Mr Eyewu-Ago, including off-duty police officer Luke Dowling, who called 999.

Mr Eyewu-Ago died in hospital on June 8 after a fatal stabbing to his heart. Ernesto and Nico Elliott were arrested later the same day on suspicion of murder.

Ernesto Elliott was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 26 years and a concurrent sentence of 12 years' imprisonment for robbery.

His son Nico Elliott was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 22 years and a concurrent sentence of 10 years' imprisonment for robbery.

Nico Elliot
Nico Elliot. Picture: Met Police

Detective Chief Inspector Kate Kieran, the lead investigator, said: "After robbing Nathaniel Eyewu-Ago of drugs and cash, Ernesto and Nico were prepared to use any form of violence necessary to protect their stolen property.

"This case is another example of how the illegal drug trade fuels violent crime.

"Not only has this incident resulted in the death of one man and life imprisonment sentences for two others, it has also caused significant trauma to innocent members of the public who witnessed it."

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