ONE of two men accused of carrying out a kidnapping in Bradford has admitted in court that he lied during a police interview – but still insisted he had nothing to do with the incident.

Ghufran Khalid told Bradford Crown Court today that he was being set up and had no reason to kidnap and attack Ataf Ali last November.

Taking the stand in his defence, Khalid, was quizzed by prosecutor Gerald Hendron over a statement he made in interview when asked where he was on the evening of the attack on 37-year-old Mr Ali.

Khalid told police he had driven to Tesco on Great Horton Road at around 7pm in his own car to pick up a prescription.

CCTV evidence later showed it was 10pm and he was in a white Mercedes, the type and colour of vehicle linked to the crime.

“I was mistaken on the time,” Khalid told the court, adding: “It was my friend’s car and I wasn’t insured on it, so I tried to cover it up as I didn’t want points on my licence.”

Susannah Proctor, for Khalid, outlined a number of short mobile phone calls and texts made between the defendant and his wife that evening, which she said placed him at his home address.

The calls and messages took place between 6.30pm and 8.30pm, and were as a result of an argument the pair were having while his wife was out, Khalid told the jury.

When asked about an affair his wife, Becca McCreath, was said to have had with a man called Imran Sajwal, he said they had patched things up, but that there were ongoing issues with Mr Sajwal and his friends.

He added “it was not a big deal” that the complainant Mr Ali had given Mr Sajwal and Khalid’s wife a lift to Leeds. “The person who she went out with – that’s a big deal,” he told the jury.

He added over the distinctive car used in the alleged kidnap: “If you were going to kidnap someone you are not going to do it in a brand new Mercedes with a big stripe down it. It’s ridiculous.”

Earlier in the case, the prosecution alleged that Khalid and Paul Serrant were in a Mercedes car which pulled up alongside Mr Ali’s vehicle outside his home in Ellercroft Road, in Lidget Green, on November 1, 2018, at around 7.25pm.

The jury in the case has heard claims that Mr Ali was ordered into the Mercedes, blackmailed for £10,000, threatened with a machete and assaulted during the incident.

Mr Hendron outlined the prosecution case that Serrant had been responsible for choking Mr Ali in a headlock and wrapping a seatbelt round his neck and that Khalid had been driving the car.

Khalid, 40, and Serrant, 28, both of Withins Close, Great Horton, have denied charges of kidnap, blackmail, threatening with an offensive weapon and assault.

Serrant told detectives that he was at home with his family at the time before being dropped off at Trafalgar House police station by his sister.

He also pointed out that the suspect was said to be “mixed race” while he was white, but the complainant had refused to take part in an identification parade.

The trial continues.