Man Shot And Buried In Epping Forest
4th August 2016
Two men who were convicted of murder, after they executed a man and buried his body in Epping Forest, have been sentenced to life imprisonment.
Remzi Akguc, 41 (16.01.75) of Margery Street, WC1 and Yilmaz Coskun, 36 (05.04.80) of no fixed address were found guilty by a jury at the Old Bailey, on Tuesday, 2 August, of murdering Hidir Aksakal, aka 'Boxer Cetin' and preventing his lawful burial.
On Wednesday, 3 August, they were both sentenced to life imprisonment and ordered to serve a minimum of 32 years.
During the trial, the court heard that after shooting Hidir Aksakal four times, they wrapped him in tarpaulin and concealed the body in woods close to Hollow Ponds, along Whipps Cross Road, E11.
The jury returned unanimous verdicts on both charges in relation to Akguc while they convicted Coskun by a majority of 10-2 for the murder, and unanimously for preventing a lawful burial.
Detective Chief Inspector Jamie Piscopo, from the Homicide and Major Crime Command, said: "Hidir Aksakal's murder was a cold-blooded execution with the defendants then going to great lengths to dispose of his body.
"They chose a remote part of Epping Forest for the burial, thinking presumably his remains would never be found. But they were stumbled across by a man out walking.
"While Akguc and Coskun took their time selecting a secluded part of the woods, they were less careful when buying tools to dispose of the body and were caught on CCTV. They were also caught on CCTV in the forest at the site of the burial.
"The evidence against them was overwhelming and I am pleased with their conviction."
On 9 September 2015, police were called at 19:05hrs to Epping Forest after a member of the public reported having found a body.
The body was partially buried and wrapped in plastic. Its hands and legs were tightly bound with blue rope with the cord also looped around the neck to bend the body over. A relatively new looking shovel was found abandoned in shallow water a few yards away.
The victim was formally identified as 53-year-old Hidir Aksakal, a Turkish national, and father, who lived in Margate in Kent. He was also known as Musa Yakut, but most commonly by the nickname 'Boxer Cetin'.
A post-mortem examination showed he had been shot four times, including a final shot fired inside his mouth.
The last known sighting of Hidir Aksakal was in Green Lanes in the early hours of 17 August 2015, an area of London that he had strong links to. He had met the defendants at a restaurant there.
Police enquiries revealed Hidir and the defendants had travelled via minicab to Coskun's then home address in Templeton Road in Tottenham.
They then murdered him in the living room.
Investigations showed later in the day on 17 August 2015, Akguc went to a builders' merchants in Stoke Newington and spent more than £230 on a shovel, panel saw, pick axe handle, tarpaulin, blue rope, trolley and two pairs of gloves.
Around 22 hours after the murder, Akguc and Coskun used the tools to bury Hidir in boggy ground deep in Epping Forest.
CCTV footage recovered showed Coskun's black Mercedes arriving at a car park by a boathouse at Hollow Ponds shortly before 01:00hrs on 18 August 2015. Driving was Akguc with Coskun in the back and a third man in the passenger seat.
The men got out, returning seven minutes later - the prosecution said they were choosing a suitable burial site.
The car drove away but returned three minutes later.
The men again all got out and went to the back of the car. They then left the vehicle for 37 minutes before driving away from the area at 01:37hrs.
The car returned again at 04:12hrs - again the men went to the rear of the vehicle and this time disappeared for 36 minutes.
Officers managed to find the car on 22 September 2015 being driven by someone else. Coskun had made arrangements to sell it on.
Searches of Coskun's home address revealed three knotted socks in the garden area at the back of the premises.
One contained a gun, another, ammunition and the third a silencer and more ammunition. Also in a sock in the same area was a hatchet. Tests showed the gun was the firearm used in the murder - it was also stained with the victim's blood.
A neighbour reported on 20 August 2015 there was an "overpowering" smell of cleaning products in the block.
At the start of September, Coskun had hired a painter and decorator to decorate his flat and replaced some flooring. Police examination of the property on 18 September 2015 found, despite the clean-up efforts, extensive blood stains in the living room and a drip trail of blood leading from the front door of the flat down the stairs to the communal hallway.
The victim's DNA was also found in Coskun's Mercedes.
Akgun was arrested on 24 September 2015 and Coskun on 6 October 2015.
In police interview Akguc told officers he was using the toilet at Templeton Road when he heard gunshots. He claimed he emerged to see Coskun shoot Hidir four or five times.
Scared, he followed Coskun's instructions and helped dispose of the body with the third man before returning to clean the flat.
Coskun's story was that he had been held against his will for a day in a bedroom at his home and did not see who murdered Hidir. Both men were subsequently charged.
A motive for Hidir's murder remains unclear but the court heard that a factor may have been the victim's acquittal following a trial in 2002 at the Old Bailey into the murder of Bulent Giritli. Evidence was also heard that the men had argued in the restaurant that night about a woman.