The mother of a teenager murdered as part of a feud between rival Norfolk street gangs has confronted her son's killers in an emotional court hearing.

Alfie Hammett and Joshua Howell have been locked up after the fatal stabbing of Raymond James Quigley, 18, on January 17 last year.

Hammett, 19, and Howell, 18, were both found guilty of murder and possession of an offensive weapon in a public place.

Hammett was jailed for a minimum of 24 years, while Howell received a minimum term of 20 years.

The pair attacked Mr Quigley on the streets of Ipswich, because he was in a different Norwich gang to Hammett.

Margaret Oaks, mother of Mr Quigley, who was from Wymondham, read out a statement before the pair were sentenced by Judge Martyn Levett at Ipswich Crown Court.

She said: “It is very hard to find the words to adequately explain the devastation my family and I feel.

Eastern Daily Press: Alfie Hammett and Joshua Howell have been jailed for murderAlfie Hammett and Joshua Howell have been jailed for murder (Image: Suffolk police)

“When I received a call from my daughter to tell me my baby had passed, I fell to the floor.

“Once the police came to see me in the evening I knew that it was real."

She added: “James was very precious and special to me.

“To see my son in the morgue was the worst nightmare a parent can imagine.

“To see my son in the coffin and to be buried at just age of 18 – how is a mother ever meant to live her life again?”

She spoke directly to the defendants and said: “To both, I cannot find the words for you.

“I just do not think there are any words for things like you.

Eastern Daily Press: The police cordon in Westgate Street after the stabbingThe police cordon in Westgate Street after the stabbing (Image: Charlotte Bond, Newsquest)

“The only question I have for you is why?”

There was also a statement from Mr Quigley's father, Raymond, read out in court.

He said: “I get a few hours sleep in the early part of the night. However, then I wake thinking of the awful things James went through.

“I am struggling every day since it happened and I will never accept what has happened to James.

“We had a very close relationship and enjoyed each other’s company."

He added: “As a family, we are so sad.

“All I have now is memories of my son and his grave to visit. I just want to give him a big hug and tell him how much I love him."