Babar Ahmad Owes Us £60,000

Babar Ahmad is a hardcore jihadist, who has been using every means at his disposal – including leaning on his old friend, Sadiq Khan MP – to avoid extradition to the United States of America.

This is why they want him:

Babar Ahmad was arrested in London on 5 August 2004 on charges that of providing material support to terrorism, providing illegal support to the Taliban, money laundering and conspiring to kill people. An affidavit filed with the US court details that Ahmad used aliases to operate Azzam.com, a website supporting Chechen and Taliban fighters. It further describes that items recovered from a house used by Ahmad included a British Airways Executive Club card in his name and next to it a floppy disk containing a password-protected document containing a detailed description of the US Fifth Fleet, its ships, the date and time of its expected passage through the Straits of Hormuz, and that it was vulnerable to attack by “RPG” (rocket-propelled grenade). Ahmad was later indicted by a grand jury of US citizens in October 2004. Another man Syed Talah Ahsan, was indicted in 2006 of involvement with Ahmad and with the battlegroup information in the document,and thereafter a US former navy seaman, Abu Jihad was indicted and convicted of passing this information to them.

This is is how Babar Ahmad’s website, azzam.com, responded to the 9/11 attacks. The screenshot below comes from 16 September 2001 (click to enlarge):

Because he is a vicious jihadist, Ahmad is one of CagePrisoners‘ most prominent cases.

In order to stall the moment when he eventually faces justice, Ahmad lyingly claimed that, when he was arrested, he was criminally assaulted. The CPS reviewed the evidence in 2004, and declined to prosecute. However, on 17 January 2005 the IPCC declared that one of the arresting officers, PC Roderick James-Bowen  would face internal police disciplinary procedures. He was cleared. Wikipedia quotes the President of the Tribunal that disciplined the officer, concluding that PC James-Bowen should be ‘commended, not castigated… for his great bravery’ in arresting Babar Ahmad.

Ahmad had another trick up his sleeve: a civil action against the police.

Civil actions, by and large, tend to end in a settlement. That is because court cases are very expensive to defend, and you rarely recover all your costs from the other side. Therefore, on a cost-benefit basis, it makes sense to settle the cases for a reasonable payout before trial. This is what happens, particularly where the police are the targets of legal action, and where defending an action will also take up a great deal of police time and resources, as officers help to prepare the defence.

Normally, you’d expect a highly controversial case to be defended fiercely by the police. However, there was a special factor in this case: the nature of Babar Ahmad’s allegations. Specifically, this:

One of the most sensitive allegations made by Mr Ahmad is that the officers mocked his religion. After he was released without charge, he claimed that he had been taken downstairs to the room he used for prayers. He alleged that officers made him kneel and one said: “Where is your God now?”

At the time, that single remark had huge implications for relations between the Metropolitan Police and Muslim communities. Pressure groups repeated the comment time and again at public meetings, presenting the police as waging a war on Muslims.

In three days of evidence, Mr Ahmad insisted that he would never forget the jibe.

The police settled the case for £60,000, plus an apology. A handsome sum, but much less than fighting the case. Much much less damaging than having the “Where is your God, now?” comment repeated again and again in the press, and in CagePrisoners/Amnesty meetings.

Well, a jury has now heard all the evidence. And this is what came out:

Crucially, although the MI5 bug captured screams, shouts and even the tinkle of a broken window upstairs, those words could not be heard in the recording played to the jury.

Did the police say those words? I suppose they might have. The only evidence that they did is the word of a hardcore jihadist, who devoted much of his young life to supporting the most extreme and vicious politics imaginable, and is now doing everything he can to avoid facing up to his crimes.

Here’s what I think.

I think Babar Ahmad is a liar. I think he managed to con us all out of £60,000, by lying. I also think he lied and lied and lied again to try to get the police who arrested him into trouble.

So did the jury.

As for the US indictment, you can read it here (pdf). An excerpt:

AHMAD helped create, operate and maintain, and cause to create, operate and maintain, the websites referred to in paragraph 10 in Connecticut, Nevada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Malaysia and elsewhere, and other internet media which posted materials designed and intended to recruit mujahideen, raise funds for violent jihad, recruit personnel for the Chechen Mujahideen, the Taliban and associated groups, and give instructions for travel to Pakistan and Afghanistan to fight with these groups, provide instructions for the surreptitious transfer of funds to the Taliban, and solicit military items for these groups, including gas masks and night vision goggles.

The websites and other internet media AHMAD helped create, operate and maintain through his expert advice and assistance would be and were used to support and justify violent jihad and his expert advice and assistance were directly and integrally linked to ongoing efforts to provide personnel, currency, military items, monetary instruments, and other material support and resources for acts of terrorism, as well as to conceal and disguise the nature, location, source and ownership of such material support and resources.