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Monday 18 December 2017

Brave shop worker stabbed as he waited for gardai

Mark O'Regan

Mark O'Regan

THE shop worker who wrestled a raider to the ground was stabbed in the hand with a syringe full of blood just seconds before gardai arrived at the scene, it has emerged.

Jahan Zaib Butt (30) remained in a serious condition in intensive care at St James's Hospital last night.

Doctors have yet to determine the exact cause of his illness, and were carrying out further blood tests last night.

Mr Butt and a co-worker were forced to wait more than 20 minutes for gardai to arrive at the Spar shop on James's Street in Dublin city centre during a robbery on Saturday.

They had managed to pin the man to the floor by sitting on his back -- but less than a minute before gardai arrived at the scene the thief managed to free his arm and stabbed Mr Butt in the hand.

The suspect, who was in his 30s, was arrested at the scene. Last night, he remained in custody at St James's Hospital, where he was being treated for a leg injury.

"A fella with a mask walked into the shop. He took the money from the till and as he was leaving Jahan hit the panic button and he was wrestled to the ground," his close friend, Adeel Butt, told the Irish Independent yesterday.

"They struggled with him for about 25 minutes while they waited for guards to arrive.

"He was stabbed with the syringe during the struggle but he only found out when the guards arrived. All of a sudden, he felt unwell and collapsed. He was stabbed in the hand."

Originally from Sialkot in Pakistan, Mr Butt moved to Ireland in 2002 in search of "a better life". He had travelled alone, but met his Latvian wife in 2005. He initially worked as a security guard while studying a management course at the Fitzwilliam Institute in Dublin.

Shop

He then took up a permanent job in the Spar shop on James's Street where he has worked ever since.

He doesn't drink or smoke; just a really decent guy. He has no other family here, local people said.

"The doctors tried to reduce his medicine last night but he started getting panic attacks and didn't respond well," said another friend, Adnan Usman.

His wife, Inga, is said to be in such a state of shock that she is "unable to speak". The couple do not have any children.

Irish Independent

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