A CAR thief jailed for the brutal murder of a former Shepley man has won the right to appeal against conviction.
Raees Khan, 22, was given leave to make a challenge in a hearing at the Appeal Court in London.
He was convicted after Kevin Jackson, 31, was stabbed in the head with a screwdriver.
He was set on as he tried to stop his father-in-law's car being stolen on December 30, 2001.
Khan's co-accused, Rashad Zaman, 23, and Rangzaib Akhtar, 22, are also seeking permission to appeal.
All three are from the Manningham area of Bradford.
Their cases were adjourned, but each was given the right to be legally represented at Khan's appeal.
Father-of-two Mr Jackson died after being stabbed in the street near his home in Skircoat Green, Halifax.
He was a maintenance worker for Syngenta in Huddersfield. The family lived in Shepley before moving to Cow Lane in Skircoat Green six years before his death.
Mr Jackson ran out to confront the gang after his wife, Julie, told him of the car theft outside their home.
He left two sons, Jake, who was seven at the time of his father's death, and Tom, just 15 months old, asleep in the house.
Michael Harrison QC , for Khan, said that although his client struck Mr Jackson once with a screwdriver, the murder victim was still standing and talking defiantly when Khan left the scene.
The judge, Lord Justice Kennedy, said Khan's case was that he struck Mr Jackson's left side with a screwdriver, but not enough to cause serious injury. He then left the scene.
The judge said Khan - described as of limited intellect - claimed that as he left Akhtar used a piece of wood to "fell" Mr Jackson and had continued "attacking him while Khan left".
He added: "It was very much part of Khan's case that Akhtar may well have caused the fatal injuries."
Khan's legal challenge is being made on the basis that the trial judge failed to allow the jury to properly consider the "fundamental question of whether he inflicted the fatal injury".
The prosecution case is that the killing was a joint enterprise between all three.
Lord Justice Kennedy said there was no doubt that those trying to steal the car were the three accused men.
The dispute turned on the exact circumstances surrounding Mr Jackson's death.
He died on New Year's Day after he was found fatally wounded in the snow soon after the violence.
Khan, of Priestman Close, Akhtar, of Salt Street, and Zaman, of Aspley Crescent, were all convicted of murder after a trial at Leeds Crown Court in December, 2002.
They all received life sentences.
No date was set for the full hearing of Khan's appeal.