Rush Green family speak of night they fought off armed burglars

Tasbiya Iqbal, with her dad Mohammed, baby son Raheel and husband Imran Ashraf (Picture: Paul Bennet

Tasbiya Iqbal, with her dad Mohammed, baby son Raheel and husband Imran Ashraf (Picture: Paul Bennett) - Credit: Archant

A gang of armed men charged into a family home, stabbing a dad-of-four and punching his daughter as they resisted a violent burglary.

Shahad Ali, 20, of East Road, Chadwell Heath and Reece Simpson, 21, of Thorntons Farm Avenue, Rush Green, are due to be sentenced for the raid on the Iqbal family at Snaresbrook Crown Court on February 9 alongside Mohammed Rony, 21, of Wanstead Park Road, Ilford; Zann Khan, 22, of Essex Road, Manor Park; and Junior Cisse, 22, of Ashwood Avenue, Rainham.

The Iqbal family, of Jutsums Lane, near Rush Green, this week spoke of the harrowing attack that has left them scarred, telling how they stubbornly refused to let the men steal from them just because they had a “gun”.

Tasbiya Iqbal, then 20, was punched in the face by one of the assailants as she helped her dad struggle to wrestle an imitation pistol off another man.

“I was upstairs with my sisters [Muriam and Rukhsar, then 18 and 15], and heard the noise, so I came to the banister to see what was going on,” she said.

“Once I saw I told my sisters to go back to the room and call the police. I came down and my dad was trying to grab the gun off the men. I helped and managed to grab the gun, but as we were struggling they stabbed my dad.”

Mrs Iqbal, now married and mother to a two-month-old son, would later find her father in a pool of his own blood in the driveway, where he collapsed after giving chase as the burglars fled.

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She added: “For my dad the main concern was to get the gun off them. My brother wanted to get them out the house. I wanted to get them off my dad.

“We weren’t going to let them in and let them take our stuff.”

Mohammed Iqbal, 50, who put himself in harm’s way when a replica weapon was pointed at his wife, survived the attack, but now only sleeps in his lounge beneath monitors for newly-installed CCTV.

The five men were found guilty of aggravated burglary and conspiracy to steal on December 22 – more than two years after the incident at about 8.30pm on December 17, 2012.