A judge has sentenced a man to a term of 14 years in prison for stabbing and killing a colleague who had asked him to give a young boy drug treatment.
A jury found Bassem Ibrahim, 26, guilty of causing death by dangerous driving on a September 2016 day when he killed Lisa Millwall, a caseworker with London children’s services department.
Millwall had reportedly requested Ibrahim go with her to north London where he could work with a boy suspected of having mental health issues. The young man was distressed about having a man named “Angelo” taking his lunch and before he could say anything it was too late.
“You certainly should not have been allowed to go with her,” the Old Bailey judge, Mr Justice Gustave Martin, told Ibrahim on Monday.
Ibrahim had been asked by another caseworker, Nicola Foster, to wait at a bus stop while she went outside to talk to the boy. Foster then asked Millwall: “You’re not going to stand around if you’re not needed, are you?”
The court heard that when Foster approached Ibrahim outside her house, he initially denied being at the scene before admitting it. She asked Ibrahim if he was under arrest but he ran away.
Foster’s husband captured her husband shouting at Ibrahim before his arrival. In a statement, he said that Ibrahim, a freelance translator for the Metropolitan police, had confessed to stabbing Millwall to “let me go”.
Within minutes Foster was found outside the Millwall family home, a townhouse in Elm Grove, Islington, bleeding and dying from a stab wound. Millwall, 26, from Hackney, north London, had started working for children’s services in 2011 and was a qualified social worker.
With local news stations outside, a handcuffed Ibrahim was taken into the building by police and asked to address Millwall’s parents, siblings and two children.
Millwall’s mother, Denise, told the court: “He had chosen that day to return to home where he had committed murder. You cannot have a murderer go back home.”
She added: “He should not be allowed back into his own home with our children, he is a murderer and he should serve his sentence in prison not go home to his children.”
Friends and relatives broke down in tears as Martin passed sentence.
Michael Paton, 27, who had helped Foster, described the killing as “wicked and ferocious and was in no way targeted at him”.
He said: “Nicola stopped in her tracks and that was the day Lisa Millwall was stabbed to death by Bassem Ibrahim.
“She was stopped and we all stopped with her in disbelief. Nicola was heading home and to help someone and now her life is destroyed … She was cut down in her prime. She should be in bed, I just miss her.”
Ibrahim’s solicitor said he took full responsibility for his actions.
Nigel Lickley, QC, said: “He has absolutely no recollection of the murder. Bassem Ibrahim accepted the jury’s verdict at the end of the trial and he accepts he is responsible for Lisa Millwall’s death.
“He was scared of the boy who was behaving threateningly … He thought Lisa Millwall was going to come and attack the boy with a knife and that was his action.”
Millwall’s brother, David Parker, said her death was a “hugely tragic loss”.
“I miss Lisa terribly,” he said. “She was taken from our family way too soon and has left us with a huge hole.
“Everyone who knew Lisa loved her, she was a lovely person. Lisa had an infectious smile and always had a smile. She was loved by all and she will be greatly missed.”