Father of three who borrowed £ 1,000 payday loan to hire hitmen to kill his ex’s new lover in jail for life
He hired two men to kill his victim with an ax, but despite being stabbed in the neck, he miraculously survived.
Image: Cavendish Press)
A carpenter who borrowed £ 1,000 from a payday lender to hire hitmen to kill his ex-girlfriend’s new lover has now been jailed for life.
Luigi Dalli, 47, paid two men the sum to kill Kurt Crawford with an ax after the victim started dating his ex.
Mr Crawford, 39, was on his way home after a weekend with Joanna Beech, 46, when two men jumped up and attacked him.
He was stabbed in the abdomen with a knife and cut in the neck and collarbone with the ax – but miraculously survived after using a recycling bin as a shield to fend off his attackers.
Police who investigated the botched murder discovered that Dalli was so obsessed with Miss Beech that he set up a fake Facebook account posing as a woman in an attempt to separate the lovers.
At Manchester Crown Court, the father of three, Dalli, of Salford, was found guilty of conspiracy to murder and soliciting murder after a trial.
He will have to serve at least 15 years before being considered for parole.
The court heard that Dalli had met Miss Beech in March 2013, but he became obsessed with her and repeatedly asked her to marry him during their stormy two-year romance.
On one occasion he stuck a huge banner on a bus stop saying, “Joanna Beech, will you marry me.”
Miss Beech told the jury: “It was very embarrassing – my son had to come down and take him away.
“My relationship with Luigi was good at first, but things started to take a turn for the worse when the drink got involved and there was a lot of arguing.
“Her family used to say, ‘He’s not a bad person, you should get back together’ every time we go our separate ways – but it got very physical when the relationship ended.
“There was no way on earth that I would ever get back with this man.”
She said they finally broke up after Dalli hit her in a violent and jealous rage when a man complimented Miss Beech in their local pub.
Her car was later vandalized twice and she saw Dalli drive past her house and look at her and her two children.
In May of last year, Miss Beech started dating Mr Crawford – who is single – after meeting him on Facebook, but Dalli created a fake profile as “Suzie Boyd” as part of the show. ‘a campaign to separate them.
Miss Beech received Facebook messages from ‘Suzie Boyd’ saying, ‘Stay away from Kurt, he’s married, he will bother you – we know you love your kids, you better watch yourself.
“He has a wife and he’s on a break. I made your car, you have beautiful children, next time it won’t be the car.”
At the same time, Mr. Crawford began to receive friend requests from “Suzie Boyd”, which he blocked.
Police gave Dalli a verbal warning ordering him to stay away from Miss Beech, but he turned to another former partner, Caroline Meighan, 43, for help and she recruited Carl Johnson, 28, and his brother Liam, 20, his neighbors in Ordsall, Salford. .
Dalli then made two separate requests for the £ 1,000 loan – then withdrew two £ 500 from the distributors before paying the brothers to strike Mr Crawford on June 14.
The victim, from Burnley, told the court: “I saw two figures behind me and they were wearing ski masks. They just came towards me and one of them had an ax.
“The one with the ax was trying to hit me with it, aiming at my head.
I put my hands up to try and stop the ax as the other guy punched me in the stomach. I kept asking, “why, I didn’t do anything”, but there was no communication from them.
“I picked up a nearby recycling box and used it as a shield to keep the ax from hitting me. I screamed for help then heard a voice and the men ran away.
“It wasn’t until then that I realized I had been stabbed.”
Mr Crawford suffered internal bleeding but recovered after surgery. Police arrested Dalli after finding his business card in a Citroën Berlingo used in the coup.
Officers also recovered a tag from a tarp that had been purchased with the intention of wrapping Crawford’s body inside.
After his arrest, Dalli was remanded in custody, but he attempted to orchestrate a second assassination attempt on Mr Crawford behind bars.
He denied plotting the murder but admitted recruiting the Johnsons to give the victim a “good kick”.
His lawyer Charles Miskin QC said: “He was just a man with a passion. The crime he committed was not committed by him for profit, it was conceived out of jealousy.”
But Judge David Stockdale QC told Dalli: “This was a carefully planned, premeditated attack – its purpose was for Mr. Crawford to be killed. You have demonstrated how dangerous you are.
“After everything I have learned about you and your behavior, I am convinced that you present a significant risk of serious harm to others. You were the driving force behind the planned murder.”
The Johnson brothers were convicted of conspiracy to murder and intentional GBH conspiracy and were jailed for life with a minimum of 15 years to serve.
Meighan, from Ordsall, was sentenced to three years in prison for conspiring to provoke GBH.