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Prosecuting Terrorism

Terrorism, race hate, crimes against humanity, war crimes, violent extremism, hijacking and espionage cases are tackled by a specialist team of Crown Prosecutors. The Counter Terrorism Division of the CPS includes highly experienced prosecutors, advocates and caseworkers who work closely with the police to bring offenders to justice.

Find out more about how we prosecute cases of terrorism.

Terrorist "Mr Fix-It" convicted with two others of terrorism offences

18/08/2008

Aabid Khan was a terrorism facilitator with international connections and the leader of a cell which gathered a library of terrorism information helpful to those plotting attacks, said Karen Jones of the Crown Prosecution Service Counter Terrorism Division.

Together with Sultan Muhammed and Hammaad Munshi, Aabid Khan was found guilty of charges that included possessing an article for a purpose connected with terrorism and making a record of information likely to be useful in terrorism. Ahmed Suleiman was found not guilty of the same charges.

Mrs Jones, the reviewing lawyer in the case, said: "The evidence showed Khan was a committed and active supporter of Al Qaida ideology. He had extensive amounts of the sort of information that a terrorist would need and use and the international contacts to pass it on.

"The prosecution case was that Aabid Khan was the link between Sultan Muhammed and Hammaad Khan. Police found the three had computer files and discs, books, documents and videos as the tools of their trade - terrorism.

"There were not only items of propaganda but practical guides on making explosives and poisons and a particularly chilling step-by-step video guide of how to make a suicide vest.

"Aabid Khan was very much the "Mr Fix-it" of the group. He preyed on vulnerable young people and turned them into recruits to his cause, using internet chat to lure them in then incite them to fight. He arranged their passage to Pakistan for terrorism training, and talked about a "worldwide battle"."

Hammaad Munshi was only 15 when he met Aabid Khan and Mrs Jones said he is one of the youngest people in England and Wales to be charged with a terrorism offence at the age of 16.

She said: "When looking at the evidence against Hammaad Munshi I was satisfied there was enough for a case to go to court and that it was in the public interest, despite his young age.

"The prosecution told the jury of his dedication to the cause of Al Qaida, and of discussions with Aabid Khan which included how he could travel abroad and smuggle a sword with him."

When reviewing the evidence against Aabid Khan and the others, Mrs Jones said she made the decision they should be charged under Sec 57 of the Terrorism Act 2000, that says someone has in their possession an article in circumstances which give rise to a reasonable suspicion that the possession was for a purpose connected with the commission, preparation or instigation of an act of terrorism.

She said: "The purpose of this legislation is to enable the police and the prosecuting authorities to act early against people who possess articles for a terrorist purpose, before a plan or conspiracy to commit a particular act has necessarily been formed.

"There was clarification by the Court of Appeal earlier this year on the use of Sec 57 and this case shows people can still be charged and convicted where there is the evidence."

  1. Aabid Khan was charged with four offences under Sec 57 (1) of the Terrorism Act 2000.
  2. Sultan Muhammed was charged with three offences under Sec 57 (1) of the Terrorism Act 2000 and one offence under Sec 58 (1) of the Terrorism Act 2000.
  3. Hammaad Munshi was charged with one offence under Sec 57 (1) of the Terrorism Act 2000 and one offence under Sec 58 (1) of the Terrorism Act 2000.
  4. Ahmed Hassan Suleiman was charged with three offences under Sec 57 (1) of the Terrorism Act 2000.
  5. Sec 57 (1) - possessing an article for a purpose connected with terrorism - carries a maximum sentence of 10 years. Sec 58 (1) - making a record of information likely to be useful in terrorism - carries a maximum sentence of 10 years.
  6. The trial started on 9 June 2008 at Blackfriars Crown Court.
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