Shopkeeper still living in fear a year after armed raiders attack his store

A brave shopkeeper who battled two robbers armed with a gun and a knife has spoken of his trauma since the attack.

Dogan Sahim, 46, had a gun pointed to his head and was then attacked with a knife during the terrifying raid on his Gonca supermarket in Blackstock Road, Finsbury Park, in December.

He said it has left him living in fear with sleepless nights and the need for medication a regular occurrence. The attackers, Levi Ingram and Denzel Sasa, fled without stealing anything after Mr Sahim and his son Yilmaz, 25, bravely forced them outside in a chaotic brawl captured on CCTV.

Around 15 minutes earlier the two men had raided a store in Tufnell Park and stole �300 after threatening staff with their weapons.

At Blackfriars Crown Court on Thursday, Ingram was sentenced to nine years and Sasa was jailed for six years.


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Mr Sahim suffered three minor cuts to the head in the raid – but, following the culprits’ sentencing hearing last week, he revealed how the mental scars have been far greater.

He said: “It has been very hard. I am still in fear. I often have sleepless nights and take lots of different medication.”

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Mr Sahim, who is Turkish but has lived in England for 22 years, described his feelings when the robbery began, saying: “I thought they were joking. But he said ‘this is no joke, we want the money’.

“It all seemed to happen within a minute. I wasn’t scared and would fight back whatever happens.

“This is my business and I won’t let anyone take it.”

Mr Sahim, a former cab driver who has three sons and four grandchildren, only took over the Gonca Supermarket in May last year after running another corner shop in Harringey for 17 years.

He has also criticised the jail term handed to the defendants, particularly the fact that Denzel Sasa may be eligible for release from prison in three years with his six year sentence.

He said: “I am not happy with the sentence. We could have easily died so would three years cover our lives?

“I don’t think this is a big enough penalty. This system doesn’t work.

“It could be another shop in future.”

Judge Peter Clarke QC, when sentencing Ingram and Sasa, said: “I hope these two men come to realisation of the colossal psychological damage this has had on Dogan Sahim.

“He has had sleepless nights, a loss of appetite and memory and sleeping problems.”

n For terrifying CCTV footage of the raid follow the link on the right hand side of the page

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