Saturday, November 28, 2015

Mubasher Ahmad and Mehmood Hussain jailed for raping teen

Mubasher Ahmed, left, and Mehmood Hussain
Two Calderdale men have been jailed for nine years each after they both raped a Huddersfield teenager who was left stranded after a night out.
The 17-year-old victim, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, had been drinking in Halifax last October, but following an argument with her friend she was left stranded at a petrol station on the outskirts of the town.
A judge today said married father-of-one Mubasher Ahmad had been “cruising” the streets that night looking for someone to prey on.
The 31-year-old, of Kingsbury Place, Halifax, reassured the girl and took her to buy some food, but when she thought he was giving her a lift back to Huddersfield he took her to a secluded area and raped her in his car.
Judge Jonathan Durham Hall QC said what followed was even more sordid as Ahmad telephoned his brother-in-law Mehmood Hussain and he turned up in a car so the terrified teenager could be passed on to him.
Father-of-two Hussain, 32, of Hyde Park Road, Halifax, did eventually drop the teenager off in Huddersfield, but not until after he had also raped her in his car.
Judge Durham Hall described the complainant’s evidence to a jury at Bradford Crown Court as “compelling” and he described her as being “frozen with fear” during her two-hour ordeal that night.
The judge said the two defendants had “twisted, wriggled and turned” in their evidence during the week-long trial and he branded their claims that the teenager had instigated the sexual encounters as “rubbish.”
Both men were found guilty of raping the teenager by the jury this afternoon and each received a prison sentence of nine years.
They also have to register as sex offenders with the police for the rest of their lives.

Nursery school teacher's two sons slipped out of Britain to join ISIS and one may already have died in battle

  • Khayerul Miah, 21, and brother Thahirul, 23, fled to Syria earlier this year
  • Mother Rana Begum, 44, has been told one may have been killed in fighting
  • Mrs Begum works at Torriano Infants School, Kentish Town, north London
  • Growing anger after school did not tell parents about the men joining ISIS
  • School said Mrs Begum is a 'valued' teacher and 'renounces' sons' activity
Two sons of a nursery school teacher have left Britain to join ISIS - and one is believed to have been killed in battle.

Khayerul Miah, 21, and his brother Thahirul, 23, are said to have fled to Syria from their homes in Kentish Town, north west London, earlier this year.

Their mother Rana Begum, 44, has now been told by police that one of her British-born sons may have died fighting for the terror group. It is believed that it was her who initially told police that they had fled the UK. 

Khayerul Miah, 21, has left from his home in Kentish Town, north west London, to fight in Syria for ISIS alongside his 23-year-old brother Thahirul
Khayerul Miah, 21, has left from his home in Kentish Town, north west London, to fight in Syria for ISIS alongside his 23-year-old brother Thahirul

But Torriano Infants School, where Mrs Begum works as a nursery school nurse and teacher, had not officially told parents about the brothers joining ISIS until today. 

This morning, the school insisted that Mrs Begum - who worked at the school for 18 years - is a 'valued member of staff' who poses 'no threat' to pupils, adding that her sons' radicalistaion had been 'a personal tragedy'.

A friend of the family, 20, said: 'As far as I'm aware she called the police and said they had travelled to Syria. 

'She called the police to say her children have flown to Syria. Take that heartache and add it to not knowing whether one of your kids is dead or alive - it's heartbreaking.' 
He added that Khayerul 'did not have a bad bone in his body'.

He said: 'It was heart breaking to know he fled there. It's sad he's been groomed like this. He was one of those people who worked hard and wanted to do something with his life.' 

In a statement issued this morning Luca Salice, Chair of Governors, said Mrs Begum completely 'renounces' the activity of her two sons.

In a letter to parents, it added that the school was 'disappointed' the matter had been shared in a public forum.

The statement read: 'The mother of the two young men is a valued member of staff at Torriano Primary School and she completely renounces their activity.

'The school immediately followed the agreed procedures for safeguarding children by contacting both the Metropolitan Police and the Council 'Prevent' officers, who are responsible for responding to threats of radicalisation.

'The police and prevent team investigations concluded there was no indication the two young men had been radicalised by their mother and no further action should be taken as she poses no threat to pupils in the schools.

'We take our duties under the Prevent Strategy very seriously - we report suspicious activity to the police and have a strong safeguarding practice to counter both sexual exploitation and radicalisation.

'Torriano is proud of its record in fostering community cohesion within its diverse community.'
 The mother of the two young men is a valued member of staff at Torriano Primary School and she completely renounces their activity
 Luca Salice, Chair of Governors
They added: 'This was a personal tragedy for this member of staff and her family.

'We call upon the media to respect her grief and to remain mindful of the feelings of staff and the impact on pupils and parents.'

Today, there were three meetings for parents to answer any questions about the situation.

The majority of parents seemed satisfied by the school's steps to inform the police who then vetted the teacher.

Meanwhile, friends said police have searched the family's home - a three-bed flat valued at around £750,000 - and taken away computers. 

The brothers' father Shamshad Miah, 49, is believed to work as a taxi driver and is on the executive committee of the local mosque. Neighbours say they have another brother who remained at home.  
Today, neighbours told how the brothers seemed like normal children and that their mother was a 'good teacher' who would have been devastated by their radicalisation. 

John, a neighbour who has one child at Torriano taught by Rana, said he would defend the teacher from 'toffee-nosed' parents who may call for her to quit.

The father-of-two, 50, who declined to give his surname said: 'Their son's may have gone to Syria but at the end of the day they have been corrupted by somebody else. It's not their parents' fault. 

'We've got a big meeting at the school about this tonight. If they try and say she should go I will stick up for her. She hasn't done anything wrong. She's a good teacher. She is good at her job.' 

Another neighbour, Jay Kay, added: 'Regardless of how her son died, she's a human being, she's got emotions and she's got feelings, they need to be respected.

'She's a great woman and her husband is a great bloke. 

They are a humble, working class family. They wouldn't hurt a fly. They have been misguided by horrible people, they were manipulated and brainwashed.'  

One neighbour Sam, 63, said the brothers seemed like a normal pair and were part of a 'normal family' but he never saw them play with other youngsters. 

'I can’t say anything bad about them. They seemed like decent normal kids. 

'I haven’t seen them for a while. I said "How’s your brother?" and he said, "He’s alright" but two weeks later I heard he died.;

He added: 'They are all normal. I wouldn’t have thought they would do anything like that but people can be deceptive.

'I must see the dad twice a week. He’s a minicab driver for Addison Lee I think. He’s a good man. I can’t say anything bad about him.'  

Around 750 Britons are thought to have travelled to join ISIS, including teenage girls, while about 450 have returned to the UK. 

Police say the returnees pose a significant threat yet only a handful have been prosecuted. Instead they are being referred to the Government’s Prevent strategy which aims to deradicalise extremists and change their thinking.  

Yesterday it emerged that a suspected extremist is walking Britain’s streets despite being arrested on the Syrian border in September.
Waheed Ahmed, 21, and eight relatives, including a one-year-old, were picked up by Turkish police who feared they planned to join the Islamic State terror group.

They were all deported and Ahmed, a student whose father is a Labour councillor, is now a regular sight in Rochdale. He is one of a number of suspected extremists released without charge in Britain after being stopped at the Syrian border.  


Reyaad Khan, 21, who joined ISIS after leaving his home in Cardiff in 2013, is said to have died in an air strike in July
Reyaad Khan, 21, who joined ISIS after leaving his home in Cardiff in 2013, is said to have died in an air strike in July
Around 750 Britons are thought to have travelled to join ISIS, including teenage girls, while about 450 have returned to the UK.  
Of those, around 60 are believed to have died in battle. Earlier this month, Mohammed Emwazi - known as masked executioner Jihadi John - was killed in a drone strike, having gone to Syria in 2012 and appeared in a number of ISIS videos in which hostages were beheaded. 
Former student Reyaad Khan, 21, who joined ISIS after leaving his home in Cardiff in 2013, is said to have died in an air strike in July, while another British jihadi, known among extremists as Abu Qudama Al-Britani, was reported to have died in January.
One of the first known deaths came in July last year when Ifthekar Jaman - a 23-year-old from Portsmouth who described his life in the Middle East as 'five star jihad' - was killed fighting for Jabhat al-Nusra.
His brothers Tuhin Shahensha, 26, and Mustakim Jaman, 23, were last week jailed for six years each after being found guilty of preparing terrorist acts. 
In September last year, four British men were killed in a single U.S. airstrike in the Syrian city of Aleppo. Among then was 19-year-old Ibrahim Kamara who was born and raised in Brighton.
Other British fighters who have been killed in the fighting include teenaged brothers Abdullah and Jaffar Deghayes from Brighton, East Sussex.
One of the first known deaths came in July last year when Ifthekar Jaman (pictured) - a 23-year-old from Portsmouth who described his life in the Middle East as 'five star jihad' - was killed fighting
One of the first known deaths came in July last year when Ifthekar Jaman (pictured) - a 23-year-old from Portsmouth who described his life in the Middle East as 'five star jihad' - was killed fighting
Jaffar, 17, is believed to have died in October last year trying to overthrow dictator Assad's government. Abdullah, 18, died in Latakia province in April last year after leaving the UK in January to reportedly take up arms with al-Nusra. 
Names of other British nationals known to have died in Syria include Abdul Waheed Majeed - a 41-year-old suicide bomber from Crawley; Kabir Ahmed - a 30-year-old father of three from Derby who blew himself up in July; and Abu Abdullah al-Britani and Abu Abdullah al-Hajar, whose names are known but whose life and death details remain clouded in speculation.  
Those killed are referred to my their jihadist friends as 'green birds' in reference to passages in the Koran that talks about martyrs living in the hearts of green birds in paradise.  

man accused of raping and sexually assaulting teenager

A MAN from Purley has appeared in court charged with raping and sexually assaulting a teenager at an address in Croydon.
Shuan Sabah Maroof, 19, of Foxley Lane, did not enter a plea at Croydon Crown Court today (Wednesday).
The second year Bournemouth University student is charged with one count of rape and one count of sexual assault against a woman, who was 16-years-old at the time of the alleged offence in December 2013.
Maroof, who was represented by Robert Tolhurst, is also accused of attempting to pervert the course of justice between December 2013 and September this year.
Judge Nicholas Ainley ordered Maroof, who is on bail, to return to court on February 3, 2016, for a plea and case management hearing.

More than 10,000 seek asylum in the UK in only three months:

  • Home Office figures show requests for asylum hit 10,156 in three months
  • Figures from July, August and September were highest in 12 years
  • Showed a 64 per cent surge from April-June when 6,203 sought asylum
The migration crisis which engulfed Europe over the summer has led to a sharp rise in asylum-seekers in the UK.

The number of people seeking sanctuary in Britain in the three months to September hit 10,156 – up 64 per cent from the 6,203 between April and June, according to the Home Office.

 It was the highest figure recorded for 12 years.

The increase coincided with the height of the chaos at Calais when some 5,000 immigrants camped in the city made desperate attempts to stow away on lorries, trains and ferries to sneak over the English Channel.

Same time: The surging figures cover the time period of chaotic scenes in Calais - pictured above as migrants try to overwhelm lorry traffic into Britain
Same time: The surging figures cover the time period of chaotic scenes in Calais - pictured above as migrants try to overwhelm lorry traffic into Britain
Through the tunnels: Migrants are pictured on the tracks in August not far from the Channel Tunnel
Through the tunnels: Migrants are pictured on the tracks in August not far from the Channel Tunnel

Blaming the UK for the situation, French politicians said the migrants saw the country as a soft touch with lavish benefits and the prospect of illegal work and accommodation.

The issue escalated when more than 850,000 migrants made their way to Europe after fleeing humanitarian disasters in Africa and the Middle East. Many were able to make their way across the continent unhindered once they had made it to the EU’s passport-free Schengen zone.

 Of the 10,156 migrants claiming asylum in the UK between July and September, 1,516 came from Sudan, followed by Eritrea with 1,385, Iran 863 and war-ravaged Syria 796.

In the year to the end of September, there were 29,024 main applications for asylum, not including spouses, children or other family members – 19 per cent higher than the 24,324 people who sought refuge in the previous 12 months.

Of those arriving here, 2,402 came from Syria – none of them through Government schemes to bring displaced people from the war. 

But only 12,011 – or 41 per cent – were granted asylum or alternative protection.

 It meant nearly six out of ten failed in their claim, including because they were considered economic migrants who came to the UK to work.

However, the number of asylum seekers remained a fraction of the record 84,000 who arrived in the UK in 2002 under Tony Blair.

Lord Green of Deddington, chairman of think-tank MigrationWatch, said: ‘We need to keep a close eye on the scale of asylum claims. It will be particularly important to sort out the economic migrants as quickly as possible and return them to their countries of origin.

 We must make sure we don’t become a destination of choice for people who don’t genuinely need protection.’

But Madeleine Sumption, director of the Migration Observatory at the University of Oxford, said: ‘Despite an increase in the number of asylum applications in the UK over the summer, refugees and asylum seekers still represent only 5 per cent of non-British immigration.’

The Home Office said: ‘World events have an effect on which nationals apply for asylum at any particular time. The United Kingdom has a long and proud history of offering sanctury to those who genuinely need our protection.

‘All claims for asylum are considered on their individual merits, and where people establish a genuine need for protection from persecution, refuge will be granted.

‘However, if people do not need our protection they are expected to leave the UK and we may remove them if they do not go voluntarily.’

Outrage as Red Ken says the 7/7 bombers 'gave their lives' for the cause:

  • Ken Livingstone said terrorists ‘gave their lives’ in protest at Iraq invasion 
  • He blamed former prime minister Tony Blair for the 2005 atrocity 
  • Mr Livingstone said: ‘They gave their lives, they said what they believed'
  • The ally of Jeremy Corbyn faced a storm of criticism from panel members
Former London mayor Ken Livingstone sparked outrage last night after claiming the 7/7 suicide bombers who killed 52 people in the capital ‘gave their lives’ in protest at Britain’s invasion of Iraq.

The veteran politician, who is now running Labour’s defence review, was debating the proposed bombing of Islamic State terrorists in Syria as a panel member on BBC’s Question Time.

After blaming former prime minister Tony Blair for the 2005 atrocity, Mr Livingstone – who was mayor at the time – told the audience: ‘They did those killings because of our invasion of Iraq.

‘They gave their lives, they said what they believed. They took Londoners’ lives in protest at our invasion of Iraq.’ 

Mr Livingstone, a staunch ally of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, faced a storm of criticism from fellow panel members. 

Comedian and former Labour aide Matt Forde described Mr Livingstone’s remarks as ‘shameful’, while panellist Kate Andrews, from think-tank the Adam Smith Institute, accused him of ‘accepting their [the terrorists’] excuses’.

Giving their views on social media, moderate Labour MPs were appalled. John Woodcock, Labour MP for Barrow and Furness, wrote on Twitter: ‘Not politely taking this any more … No one has mandate to side with suicide bombers.’

Gavin Shuker, Labour MP for Luton South, added: ‘The 7/7 bombers didn’t give their lives; they took the lives of others. What is happening to my party?’

Meanwhile, the Tory MP for Dudley North, Ian Austin, called Mr Livingstone a ‘total disgrace’, adding: ‘The people responsible are the terrorists. I think it’s shameful.’

Maajid Nawaz, co-founder of counter-terrorism think-tank the Quilliam Foundation, called the former mayor’s comments ‘sheer idiocy’.

Question Time viewers also condemned the politician, with one saying they felt ‘sick’ after hearing his remarks about the bombers.

Mr Livingstone’s comments contrasted with his response to the attacks in 2005. At the time, he said: ‘This was not a terrorist attack against the mighty and powerful. It was not aimed at Presidents or Prime Minister.

‘It was aimed at ordinary, working-class Londoners, black and white, Muslim and Christian, Hindu and Jew, young and old. It was an indiscriminate attempt to slaughter, irrespective of any consideration for age, for class, for religion, or whatever.

‘That isn’t an ideology, it isn’t even a perverted faith – it is just an indiscriminate attempt at mass murder and we know what the objective is.

‘They seek to divide Londoners. They seek to turn Londoners against each other.’

Outrage: Ken Livingstone's comments on Question Time last night caused widespread outrage online last night
Outrage: Ken Livingstone's comments on Question Time last night caused widespread outrage online last night

Mr Livingstone also came under fire last week for saying a Labour MP with depression needed ‘psychiatric help’.

He had to issue an apology to Kevan Jones who criticised the decision to give him a role in Labour defence policy.

Mr Livingstone said Mr Jones was ‘obviously very depressed and disturbed’ and ‘might need some psychiatric help’.

During last night’s Question Time, Mr Livingstone put himself at odds with Mr Corbyn – who has ruled out backing military action against IS in Syria – by pledging his support for sending UK troops as part of an international force to take on the extremists.

He said ‘bombing on its own is not enough’ and insisted Britain needed to put ‘boots on the ground’ as part of a UN-backed international alliance ‘finding the terrorists’.

Mohammad Sidique Khan was the 7/7 ringleader
Shehzad Tanweer killed seven people on a Circle Line train
Bombers: Mohammad Sidique Khan, left, the 7/7 ringleader and his right-hand man Shehzad Tanweer, right, and killed 13 people between them on the Tube
Hasib Hussain, 18, the youngest of the four suicide attackers, detonated his device on a number 30 bus in Tavistock Square nearly an hour after explosions ripped through three Tube trains
Jermaine Lindsay, with his wife Samantha Lewthwaite, killed 26 people on a Piccadilly Line train. Lewthwaite fled and is now known as the White Widow terrorist
Hasib Hussain, 18, the youngest of the four suicide attackers, detonated his device on a number 30 bus in Tavistock Square while Jermaine Lindsay, right with his wife Samantha Lewthwaite, killed 26 people on a Piccadilly Line train. Lewthwaite fled and is now known as the White Widow terrorist

 Shouldn't the Syrian men flocking here fight to free their nation? 

Thursday, November 26, 2015

UK Spends More on Foreign Aid than National Security...

UK School Segregates Female Administrators...

A Muslim school in the UK was found practising gender segregation after it forced a woman governor to sit in a separate room and talk through an open doorway during official meetings.

The segregation was discovered by Britain's schools inspectorate during a visit to Darul Uloom Islamic high school in Birmingham.

"During the inspection of Darul Uloom Islamic high school [in Birmingham], the actions of governors did not model the promotion of mutual respect for men and women," Michael Wilshaw, chief inspector of Ofsted - which is reviewing the standards at Britain's Christian and Muslim faith schools - wrote to UK education minister Nicky Morgan this week.

"At a meeting with inspectors, the only female governor sat out of sight of the male governors in an adjacent room [and] could only contribute through a doorway," Michael wrote.

Ofsted found another school's library contained literature with extremist and sexist views.

The inspectors of Ofsted had revisited 22 schools previously inspected by Bridge Schools Inspectorate (BSI), an agency which was abolished two months ago.

While one was rated outstanding and four were deemed good, eight required improvement and nine were found to be inadequate.

Michael said the findings were seriously concerning, and urged the re-inspection of all schools previously monitored by the BSI, as a priority.

Top Comment

Qur'an is reason these people lack reasoningsahil jain

The BSI has been accused of failing to identify "warning signs of extremism and radicalisation in school settings" by Ofsted.

"All schools must promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect for different faiths and beliefs," said a spokesperson of UK Department for Education.

The investigations follow the "Trojan Horse" scandal which broke out earlier this year over fears of extremist groups taking over the agenda at schools in Birmingham.

The Truth About Islam

Killer shouts ‘Allahu Akbar’ as he is jailed for 36 years for murdering Jordan Thomas

Jama Ahmed, of Broomhall Place, Sheffield was jailed after being found guilty by a majority verdict of murdering Mr Thomas in a shooting on Derek Dooley Way, on December 21, last year.

Jordan Thomas, aged 22, died as a result of gunshot injuries

Jordan Thomas, aged 22, died as a result of gunshot injuries

The 26-year-old was also found guilty of attempting to murder Mr Thomas’ friend, Neshaun Ferguson, following a seven-week trial at Sheffield Crown Court.

Passing sentence Mr Justice Green, told Ahmed he cannot be certain of he was the shooter.
He said: “I’m clear you were in the car and were intent on participating fully in this cold-blooded execution.”

He added: “Most of your associates have fled the country to evade justice.”

Justice Green said Ahmed was a ‘sophisticated drug dealer and part of a close-knit group of dealers from the Somali community.’

Ahmed shouted ‘Allahu Akbar’ and ‘Talk is cheap’ as he was led from the dock inside the courtroom.
There was also a brief disturbance in court as Ahmed’s associates left the public gallery.

A second man, Asif Yousaf, of Violet Bank Road, was cleared of murder and attempted murder, also by a majority verdict.

The 33-year-old had accepted driving the car used in the murder, but said he had not been inside during the killing.

Justice Green said Yousaf was a drug addict and an ‘innocent dupe’ in the plot to buy the car used in the murder.

Mohammed Yousaf, 61, also of Violet Bank Road, was found guilty of perverting the course of justice and handed a suspended two-year prison sentence.

Jordan, from Firshill, Sheffield, was a passenger in a silver Ford Mondeo when the car was shot at while stationary in Derek Dooley Way at around 10.10pm.

He suffered two gunshot wounds and was taken to hospital, but died a short time later from his injuries.
Mr Ferguson, the 28-year-old driver of the Mondeo, was shot once but survived the attack.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Pakistani student jailed in US for 40 years over failed al-Qaeda plots to bomb Manchester shopping centre and New York subway

  • Abid Naseer, 28, found guilty of planning to drive car bomb into Arndale 
  • Also convicted of separate plots in U.S. and on Copenhagen newspaper 
  • 'Hundreds of innocent' people could have died had he completed plans
  • Told court of his love for Manchester City in bid to serve term in the UK
  • MI5 officers were forced to give evidence wearing make-up and wigs  
Convicted: Abid Naseer planned to drive a car bomb into a shopping centre
Convicted: Abid Naseer planned to drive a car bomb into a shopping centre
Pakistani student who plotted to bomb Manchester's Arndale Centre on one of its busiest weekends has been jailed for 40 years in America.

Abid Naseer, 29, was handed the sentence after he was found guilty of planning to carry out the failed Manchester bombing, as well as a terrorist attack on the New York Subway and a Danish newspaper.

Naseer made a bizarre plea to serve his sentence in the UK, citing his love of Premier League football team Manchester City as a reason for him to be allowed to return to Britain. 

Prosecutors called it one of the most serious terror plots since the 9/11 attacks on New York and Washington, with Brooklyn's Federal Court told that 'hundreds of innocent men, women and children' could have died had Naseer been able to go ahead with the bombings.

However, it was foiled just days before Naseer was due to carry out the attack. 
Speaking today, Judge Raymond Dearie told Naseer: 'You are not a typical criminal. You are a terrorist.'

Naseer pleaded to be allowed to spend his sentence in Britain, saying he had ‘nothing but good memories’ of his time there, especially his beloved Manchester City who he used to watch every weekend.

‘They were the winners in 2012 and this year they are top of the league table,’ he told the judge – apparently unaware they have now been supplanted by Leicester City after a heavy defeat by Liverpool at the weekend.

However Judge Raymond Dearie said that he did not have the authority to grant his request, jailing Naseer for 40 years at Brooklyn’s Federal Court.

The case took place after Naseer, who arrived from Peshwar on a student visa in 2008, was extradited from the UK to the States.

Naseer was directed and commissioned by Al Qaeda to attack Manchester, forming part of a broader Al Qaeda conspiracy calling on other cells to attack civilians in the U.S. and Holland.

Whilst living in the Cheetham Hill area of Manchester he had conspired to use a potential vehicle bomb to blow up the city's shopping centre on the Easter Bank Holiday weekend in 2009.

The North-West Counter Terrorism Unit estimated that there could have been up to 90,000 people in the area - citing the bank holiday weekend as the busiest weekend after Christmas.

They said Naseer's strategy had been to detonate the bomb outside retail store Next in a saloon-type car - less than 100 metres from where the IRA struck in 1996.

He was to then use a secondary device to kill and injure more shoppers as they fled the centre into nearby Market Street.

They arrested him in April 2009, along with 11 others.

However, despite the evidence officers had collected, the Crown Prosecution Service insisted it was insufficient to secure a conviction in the UK.
He was then released on to Britain's streets despite having the capacity to kill, police said. It was left to the U.S. to step in and extradite - and eventually convict - the terrorist.

Once in court, Naseer had pleaded not guilty to providing and conspiring to provide material support to Al Qaeda and conspiring to use a destructive device. 

He even acted as his own lawyer throughout the trial, often referring to himself in the third person and portraying himself as a moderate Muslim who was falsely accused.

Amid claims that he was a bookish, cricket-loving college student, he told the court that online messages he sent on Muslim dating websites were not secret communications to Al Qaeda.

'Abid is innocent,' Naseer said in closing arguments in March, adding: 'He is not a terrorist. He is not an Al Qaeda operative.'

Later, defense lawyer James Neuman argued there was nothing to back up any claim he was a 'hardened criminal', saying the evidence at trial had been limited, that Naseer had never been found in possession of bomb-making materials and questioning how close the plot had been to execution.

During the trial, five MI5 agents gave evidence wearing makeup and wigs to disguise their appearance and told how they had Naseer and his associates under surveillance for months.

Amid bizarre scenes in court, the four male and one female agents appeared to modify their accents - one wore a fake beard and thick black glasses - as a minder looked on, also in disguise.  

Most of the case had hinged on email exchanges in 2009 between Naseer and a person described by prosecutors as an Al Qaeda handler who was directing plots to attack civilians in Manchester, New York City and Copenhagen.

Naseer insisted the emails consisted only of harmless banter about looking for a potential bride after going to England to take computer science classes.

He 'wanted to settle down,' he said, adding: 'Is there anything wrong with that?'
But the prosecutor accused Naseer of lying on the witness stand by claiming the women he wrote about were real. 

She said the women's names were actually code for home-made bomb ingredients: Nadia stood for ammonium nitrate and Huma for hydrogen peroxide.

Sentencing, Judge Dearie said he could not understand how an intelligent young man, who had been a 'champion cricket player' with a good life from a privileged and loving family could turn to terrorism.

He said: ‘I’m trying to understand how this young man, this intelligent young man who has never been arrested before, was a champion cricketer, footballer, lived a good life, reasonable privilege, loving family - how you get from that to this.

‘As much as I search to try and to understand it I don’t.’

He added: ‘In the UK and the US when it comes to terrorism the only border that really counts is the border between good and evil and you are on the wrong side of that, Mr Naseer.’ 

'I do hope that you return to the path of learning and education. That's the only hope.'

FBI assistant director-in-charge Diego Rodriguez said that, rather than use the British education visa system to further his own life, Naseer exploited it 'to take away the lives of many others in large numbers'.

He added: 'Trained in weapons and explosives, he communicated in code to hide his evil intentions.

'Found guilty in a court of law, he has been spared the fate of death he wished upon others and will spend considerable time incarcerated in a country he and his co-conspirators failed to take down.'

Mr Rodriguez said the case highlighted the importance of 'closely coordinated international law enforcement' that has the 'necessary authority and tools' to undermine terrorist plots.

Assistant US Attorney Zainab Ahmad said that if Greater Manchester Police had not stopped him then ‘hundreds if not thousands of people would be dead today’.

Following Naseer’s conviction, the detective who helped lead the original British inquiry, retired detective chief inspector Allan Donoghue, questioned the CPS judgement to release him, adding: ‘The whole command team believed that there was sufficient evidence.' 

Detective Chief Superintendent Tony Mole, from the North West Counter-Terrorism Unit (NWCTU), said he was happy with the term handed to Naseer. 

'A sentence of 40 years, we believe, is a fitting punishment for a man who came so close to carrying out what would have been one of the horrific terrorist acts seen in the UK since the 7/7 bombings,' he said.