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Police 'pleased' by Crimewatch calls.

Detectives are following up a number of new leads after a good response to Wednesday night's Crimewatch reconstruction of the murder of taxi driver Mohammed Arshad.

Around 40 calls were generated by the programme which went out on BBC1 at 9pm.

Of these about half were taken in the Crimewatch studio during and after the transmission while the rest were received by West Mercia Police officers at the Major Incident Room at Redditch Police Station.

Some of the callers claimed to know the identity of a man shown in CCTV images who police want to talk to in connection with the case. Others said they recognised the voice of a man who made an anonymous 999 call to police at the weekend, claiming he was the killer. The 999 call, aired for the first time on Crimewatch, was made at 7.03pm on Sunday evening from a phone kiosk in Redditch Road, on the outskirts of the Hawkesley estate in Kings Norton, where Mr Arshad's Ford Galaxy taxi was found abandoned shortly after the fatal attack.

Detective Superintendent Thornes, who is leading the investigation, told Crimewatch that officers were still engaged in mass screening on the Hawkesley estate where residents are being shown copies of a CCTV image.

Male residents aged between 14 and 44 are also being asked to provide voluntary forensic samples for elimination purposes.

DS Thornes said: "We are pleased with the general response and our officers are already acting on some of the information received.

"More information has been coming in today and all the calls we have received will be followed up.

"We would like to thank all those people who have picked up the phone to try and help us and urge anyone who has not yet come forward with information to do so." CCTV images of a man want to speak to in connection with the investigation are available to view on the West Mercia Police website at www.westmercia.police.uk and anyone with information about the murder should call police on 0300 333 3000 or ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

CAPTION(S):

Taxi driver Mohammed Arshad who was murdered and (inset) the reconstruction
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Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Sep 4, 2009
Words:364
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