Tuesday 21 November 2017

UK judges reject bid to kick out preacher

Jamie Grierson

The British government's battle to boot hate preacher Abu Qatada out of the country is to rage on after appeal judges rejected the latest in a long line of attempts to remove him.

Infuriating politicians and campaigners in reaching its conclusion, the Court of Appeal said it was not "relevant" that terror suspect Qatada was regarded as "extremely dangerous".

The Home Office immediately hit back as it vowed to seek leave to appeal and said it was determined to remove Qatada, who is in Belmarsh prison.

"This is not the end of the road," a spokesman said.

The UK government has now been trying to deport the radical cleric to Jordan, where he was convicted of terror charges in his absence in 1999, for nearly eight years.

Disputed

Immigration judges decided last year that Qatada, also known as Omar Othman, could not be deported over fears that evidence obtained through torture would be used against him.

Three Court of Appeal judges said the Special Immigration Appeals Commission (Siac) was entitled to conclude that disputed statements will be used against Qatada.

Lord Dyson, sitting with Lord Justice Richards and Lord Justice Elias, said: "The fact that Mr Othman is considered to be a dangerous terrorist is not relevant to the issues that are raised on this appeal."

Irish Independent

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