Brothers guilty of killing Motherwell man

Tony Dryden
Tony Dryden

Two brothers have been found guilty of killing Motherwell man Tony Dryden.

Azeem Aslam (26) and Zeeshan Aslam (23), both of Glasgow, had denied murdering Mr Dryden, but they were convicted of the lesser charge of culpable homicide after a two-week trial at the High Court in Glasgow.

They were remanded in custody and will be sentenced next month.

Members of Mr Dryden’s family sat through the trial and afterwards spoke of their relief at the verdicts.

His sister Fiona said: “We are just glad justice has been done for Tony and our mum, and that both of the brothers are going down for it.”

Mr Dryden (42), of Milton Street, died after the attack in Airdrie in March this year.

The jury heard he was killed after a feud between the owners of rival kebab shops in Airdrie.

The brothers, whose father ran one of the takeaways, chased Mr Dryden up the street when their shop window was smashed on a Saturday afternoon.

Mr Dryden ran into the garden of a house followed by the Aslam brothers.

Giving evidence, Azeem Aslam claimed Mr Dryden tried to hit him and his brother with a hammer and they both hit him to defend themselves.

But Aslam admitted he struck Mr Dryden ‘four or five’ times with the baseball bat.

Murdo McTaggart, prosecuting, told him: “You and Zeeshan moved towards Mr Dryden in a pincer movement - one of you taking one side of him and one taking the other.

“You cornered this man in the garden. He could not get out without getting past you.

“He made a weak swipe with the hammer because the two of you went towards him with weapons raised. The only self defence in this case is him trying to fend you off with the hammer.

“After that he gave up and just accepted he was going to get a beating - and that’s what he got from you and Zeeshan.

“You rained heavy and severe blows on him with the baseball bat and the piece of wood. You left him for dead.”

The court heard Azeem Aslam was later seen and heard on a shop’s CCTV film boasting in Punjabi that he had ‘fixed that guy’ and had hit him so hard the baseball bat broke.

Aslam rejected Mr McTaggart’s claim that he appeared to be ‘quite pleased with yourself, laughing and joking’ on the video.

The jury was also shown shop CCTV film of Zeeshan Aslam after the alleged attack in which he asked ‘Who would fight with us?