A "COLD-hearted" gangster will spend 25 years behind bars after being convicted of murdering a father-of-four as he begged for his life.

Jerome Charles, 33, of Dudley Road, Southall, casually granted an unknown gunman permission to execute Liam Landers, as if he were "talking about sweets".

When the gunman asked "Can I shoot this guy?", Charles, 33, shrugged his shoulders and replied: "It's up to you".

Mr Landers, 34, pleaded: "You can't shoot me, I've got four kids for f****s sake", the court heard.

But the gunman shot the victim three times at close range, Snaresbrook Crown Court heard.

The victim, who lived in Southall, bled to death in hospital, but not before uttering his dying words: "Terry set me up".

The builder was murdered after being lured into a trap by Charles' co-accused Terry Nicholas, 25, who promised to sell him cannabis, jurors heard.

But when Mr Landers arrived in Green Hill Gardens, Northolt, for the drug deal on February 20 this year. He was confronted by Charles and the gunman who were intending to rob him.

Charles was in charge of the gunman while Nicholas allegedly co-ordinated operations from a safe distance on his mobile phone.

But Nicholas, of Abbey Orchard Street, Westminster, walked free after the jury acquitted him of conspiracy to rob following four hours deliberation.

Charles, who has a previous conviction for armed robbery, was convicted unanimously of murder, possessing a firearm with intent and conspiracy to rob.

Judge David Radford told him: "Your interaction with the gunman during the armed robbery leaves no room for reasonable doubt, as the jury have found.

"You intended, if not to kill him, then to cause him very serious bodily harm.

"You must have realised this was the gunman's intent when you responded to him."

Mr Landers was taken to Ealing Hospital and underwent emergency surgery to stop massive blood loss but he was pronounced dead at 1.45pm the following day. One of the bullets had entered the right side of Mr Landers lower chest and went through his abdomen and bowel before passing through his hip.

Charles refused to identify the gunman who is still at large.