Radical cleric Abu Qatada awaiting deportation ruling

08:16 12 November 2012

Radical cleric Abu Qatada is to find out today if he will be deported to Jordan to face trial.

The man once described by a judge as Osama bin Laden’s right-hand man in Europe is fighting extradition to the Middle East country, where he was convicted of terror charges in his absence in 1999.

Qatada was allowed to stay in Britain in 1994 but the government wants to deport him.

In December 2001, Qatada became one of Britain’s most wanted men after going on the run from his home in Acton, west London. In October 2002, he was arrested by police in a council house in south London and detained in Belmarsh high-security jail.

Jordan has given assurances to Home Secretary Theresa May that no evidence gained through torture would be used against Qatada, but his legal team claim he will not get a fair trial in Jordan.

The Special Immigration Appeals Commission (Siac), which will give its ruling at noon today, heard evidence last month from Professor Beverley Milton-Edwards, who has studied Jordan’s political situation for 25 years.

She said Qatada remained a “controversial” figure in Jordan and a fair trial was unlikely.

“In my view I don’t believe there is any credible evidence that the state security court has engaged in a significant amount of reform to have any confidence of him having a fair trial,” she said.

Tribunal judge Mr Justice Mitting asked Prof Milton-Edwards whether Jordan’s memorandum of understanding with Britain to ensure that Qatada will receive a fair trial could be broken.

Prof Milton-Edwards said that, under the current political and judicial structure, it would be difficult to give “anybody” a fair trial despite international promises or widespread publicity of a case such as this one.

But lawyers for the government have told the hearing that Qatada is “scraping the barrel” in the appeal against his deportation.

Qatada, who is said to have wide and high-level support among extremists, featured in hate sermons found on videos in the flat of one of the September 11 bombers.

He has challenged and ultimately thwarted every attempt by the government over the last decade to put him on a plane.

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest Crime news

Tuesday, May 26, 2015
(Picture:: PA)

A man was caught touching himself while standing close to women at London Bridge Underground station.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Studio 338 in Greenwich

Police were forced to shut down a night at Studio 338 club in Greenwich after a double stabbing over the bank holiday.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015
Paragon Road

Police are appealing for witnesses after two men were injured following a shooting in Homerton.

Monday, May 25, 2015

A 13-year old girl was raped by a man after meeting him the day before in Camden.

Saturday, May 23, 2015
Teenagers were attacked on Parliament Hill (Pic credit: PA)

Young teenagers at a birthday gathering on Hampstead Heath were stabbed and bottled by a gang of older youths who robbed them of mobile phones and cash.

Friday, May 22, 2015
The woman was dragged through the gates of Brockwell Park in Brixton and raped

A 41-year-old woman was dragged into Brockwell Park in Herne Hill, near Brixton, before being raped by two men.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

You could take in stunning views of London over brunch at the Sky Garden

Celebrate lighter, brighter days with the chance of winning an indulgent brunch for two with a bottle of bubbles at Darwin, the cool and casual brasserie 36 floors up at Sky Garden.

Read more