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Yorke's robber faces trial delay.

A celebrity minder, due to be sentenced yesterday for robbing Birmingham City footballer Dwight Yorke of his pounds 45,000 watch, has been told he will have to wait a further five weeks to learn his fate because of his victim's busy career.

Godfrey Kessie (25), who runs bodyguard-firm Lifeline Security, mugged the pounds 30,000-a-week striker in the toilet at trendy London nightclub Funky Buddah.

But Yorke, 33, chased his attacker, caught him and retrieved the diamondstudded Franck Muller Conquistador timepiece. Kessie subsequently admitted the robbery on June 30 last year, but two co-defendants have denied taking part in the attack. They were due to be tried last month.

Kessie's barrister, Stephen Ferguson, told London's Southwark Crown Court that unfortunately the player's 'professional commitment' had forced their case to be put back until February 14. He accepted the new sentencing date of February 28, but could not countenance a further adjournment.

The defendant, of Salisbury Road, Wood Green, north London, was then arraigned on a separate matter. He denied a single charge alleging that on April 7 last year he had in his possession two modified nine-millimetre PAK calibre blank cartridges without a certificate.

Mr Ferguson said he had 'invited the Crown Prosecution Service to discontinue this matter in the light of the plea to the robbery'. Those due to stand trial on the mugging allegation are 24year-old students Mauir Hirani, of Kenton Park Avenue, Kenton, Middlesex, and Rizvi Abbas, of Merlin Close, Edgware, north London.

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Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Jan 21, 2005
Words:251
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