Matthew Quesada stabbed a grandfather to
death inside a Leyton cafe when asked if his three year-old daughter
In 2012, Quesada was ordered to serve a minimum of
26 years for the murder of 63-year-old Alan Smith at the Roma Cafe in
Lea Bridge Road in March 2011.
Mr Smith, of Hibbert Road, Walthamstow, was stabbed
five times after he asked Quesada whether his daughter, who was
crying, was "all right" while they were both in the BB cafe nearby.
Killer obsessed with Bourne trilogy stabbed
pensioner to death for asking if his crying daughter was okay before
going on run
Matthew Quesada, 26, had an 'unhealthy interest' in
the thriller films
In an east London cafe he snapped at fellow
customer Alan Smith, who expressed concern for his daughter, who was
Quesada returned home and picked up a knife
After the rapid attack doctors performed open-heart
surgery on Mr Smith in the cafe
July 14, 2012
A killer obsessed with fictional spy Jason Bourne
has been jailed for a minimum of 26 years after he stabbed a
grandfather to death and went on the run like the Hollywood hero.
Matthew Quesada, 26, developed an ‘unhealthy
interest’ in the thriller trilogy and spent hours online researching
the combat moves used by star Matt Damon.
He killed retired bus driver Alan Smith at a cafe
in front of the 63-year-old’s family after his victim asked if
Quesada’s crying daughter was ‘all right’.
Quesada looked ‘smugly’ at his fatally-injured
victim and then ran off, aping Bourne’s athleticism by vaulting a
series of garden fences.
Police believe he was acting as if he was the spy
when he plotted his escape, burning his clothes and shaving his hair.
He researched travelling to Brazil in an internet
cafe and had a list of 49 flights to Sao Paulo when police caught him.
Unlike Bourne there was no dramatic car chase -
Quesada was arrested in the passenger seat of his mother’s Nissan
Quesada tried to pretend he was mentally ill to
escape responsibility but was convicted of murder by an Old Bailey
jury last month.
His girlfriend Maria Brigette, also 26, was
convicted of assisting an offender by trying to help him avoid
detectives investigating the killing, while mother Victoria Passley-Quesada,
54, was cleared of assisting an offender.
Passing sentence, Judge Peter Rook QC told Quesada
he was guilty of a ‘truly grave crime’.
He said: ‘Your totally unprovoked attack was
carried out in front of his long-term partner, son-in-law, and
daughter, as well as customers and staff.
‘Mr Smith did no more than get up and ask if the
child was all right. Your reaction was wholly unexpected and wholly
out of proportion.
‘You carried out a frenzied attack, lunging at him
four or five times.
‘He had no chance to take any avoiding action, and
nor did anybody else present have any chance to prevent the lethal
‘This dreadful attack took less than a minute.
During that minute, you took away from Mr Smith his most precious
possession: life itself.
‘His partner, family, and friends have suffered a
most terrible loss, and their lives will never be the same again. The
toll upon his family has been, and will carry on being, massive.’
Handing Brigette a nine-month jail term, suspended
for two years, along with 200 hours of unpaid work, Judge Rook added:
‘You knew at the very least he had been involved in a very serious
‘However, I accept that at that stage you did not
appreciate that he had committed a murderous attack, and I also cannot
say on the evidence before me that you knew he had a knife.’
Quesada and Mr Smith initially clashed at the BB
Cafe in Leyton, east London, of the afternoon on March 26 last year.
Mr Smith, from nearby Walthamstow, and his wife had
gone for a meal to celebrate their daughter Estelle’s birthday with
her husband, Mark Jenkins.
When he asked about Quesada’s weeping daughter, the
killer snapped: ‘What’s it to you? What’s it got to f***ing do with
Enraged, Quesada dropped his daughter off at home
and collected a knife.
By the time he returned, Mr Smith and his family
were so shaken by the earlier confrontation that they had moved on to
the Roma Cafe in Lea Bridge Road.
Prosecutor Roger Smart said: ‘Matthew Quesada
entered the cafe soon after the deceased and his family had sat down
inside and, without a word, launched into a deadly attack upon Alan
Smith - stabbing him to the head, and crucially, to the body.
‘During this frenzied and wordless attack, Quesada
stabbed Mr Smith at least five times, causing fatal wounds.’
Mr Smith’s daughter Estelle said: ‘We sat down, and
the guy came in. I stood up and he lunged at my dad with a knife.’
She tried to put herself between her father and
Quesada while her husband picked up a nearby chair to hit him with,
but the fatal attack was over in seconds.
Doctors performed open-heart surgery on a cafe
table but Mr Smith died in hospital later that afternoon.
A post-mortem report showed the blade had pierced
Mr Smith’s heart and both of his lungs.
His long-term partner Denise Facey said the
knifeman was ‘in a frenzy’ as he carried out the killing.
‘He was a lunatic,’ she said.
‘Blood was just pouring and Alan’s head was
bleeding - there was blood all over the floor.
‘The worst thing was that, when he left, he didn’t
just go running - he stood at the door looking, with a smug look on
Following the attack, Quesada ran home by jumping
over garden fences and burned his clothes, before his mother helped
him to shave off his hair and research flights at an internet cafe.
His girlfriend kept him updated on the whereabouts
of police in the area by text message.
He was arrested the following day in the passenger
seat of his mother’s Nissan Micra, clutching his passport, a change of
clothes and a list of flights to Sao Paulo due to depart that evening
But as officers handcuffed him, the killer, whose
previous convictions include assault, threatening behaviour, and
criminal damage, told them: ‘Me and my mum were just working out how I
was going to hand myself in.’
Detectives later found the murder weapon, wrapped
in a blue plastic bag, hidden behind the base panel of a cooker at his
Two hunting knives, a sheath knife, pellet gun,
pick-axe head, and crossbow were also found in his bedroom, while the
charred remains of his clothing had been stuffed in a bag and placed
in a cupboard.
Quesada’s uncle, the boxer Patrick Passley, said
his nephew had been obsessed with the Bourne spy trilogy for years.
‘He kept on going on about this Bourne Identity,’
he said. ‘He just kept going on and on about it.
‘That’s when I first became concerned about his
behaviour. He kept on saying the guy could defend himself and his
family. The way he was going on about it was unhealthy. Afterwards,
all the time I knew him he kept going on about it.’
Quesada also told him: ‘I want to be in a position
I can do that and do all the combat moves and take a knife off
somebody. Anybody attacks me, I will be able to sort him out.’
Mr Passley said Quesada used to ‘rant under his own
breath’ about people disrespecting his family and in one incident
slashed his chest with a kitchen knife in front of his partner and
He said he ‘bottled out’ of calling police because
he feared his nephew would be sectioned.
After his arrest, Quesada told psychiatrists he
believed Mr Smith was a paedophile.
Forensic psychiatrist Dr Samrat Sengupta said his
actions were consistent with someone suffering from schizophrenia and
other ‘paranoid illnesses’.
Brigette claimed she had no idea about the killing
- or about Quesada’s stash of weapons - until their home was raided by
Passley-Quesada said she thought her son might have
been in trouble with a local gang when he came to her for help.
Quesada, of Hibbert Road, Walthamstow, denied
Brigette, of the same Walthamstow address, and
Passley-Quesada, of Lower Barn Road, Purley, south London, both denied
assisting an offender.