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Homeland Security

Britain to Send Accused Terrorist to US for Trial

October 05, 2012

by VOA News

Accused terrorist Abu Hamza will soon be sent from Britain to the United States to face charges.

Britain's high court Friday rejected Abu Hamza's final appeal, ruling he and four other terror suspects are fit to travel to the U.S. to stand trial.

Lawyers for Abu Hamza argued he should not be extradited until he gets an MRI scan after suffering several years of poor health. Attorney Alun Jones said it would be "oppressive" to send him if he is unfit to plead.

Intelligence officials said the Egyptian-born Abu Hamza turned a London mosque into a breeding ground for would-be terrorists. The U.S. wants him on charges he tried to set up a terrorist training camp in the state of Oregon and helped al-Qaida seize hostages in Yemen.

Friday's ruling also rejected the appeals of four other terror suspects - Khaled al-Fawwaz, Adel Abdul Bary, Babar Ahmad and Syed Ahsan.

Outside the courthouse, Ahmad's father, Ashfaq Ahmad, decried the ruling, saying it would be "forever remembered as a shameful chapter in the history of Britain."

"The system has let me down in a manner more befitting of a third world country than one of the world's oldest democracies," said Ahmad.

Ashfaq Ahmad also told reporters that while he now fears for his son's well-being, the final ruling came as no surprise.

"It seems the Metropolitan Police, the CPS and even the Crown, even the court, have all collided to implement a predetermined decision which was made in Washington," Ahmad added.

Syed Ahsan's brother Hamja, who has been helping to lead a campaigns to free him, also condemned the ruling. "The extradition treaty is a massive betrayal of British citizenship. The first duty of government should be to protect its own citizens," he said.

The United States said both Ahmad and Ahsan used a website to provide support to terrorists.

Britain had been prepared to send the five men to the U.S. last week but a British court delayed the extradition after Abu Hamza lodged a fresh appeal.

The British Home Office says it intends to turn Abu Hamza and the other suspects over to U.S. custody as soon as possible.



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