UK loses appeal to deport radical cleric

Muslim Cleric Abu Qatada arrives home after being released from prison on November 13, 2012 in London, England.
Muslim Cleric Abu Qatada arrives home after being released from prison on November 13, 2012 in London, England.

LONDON – Home Secretary Theresa May has lost her appeal against a ruling preventing the deportation of preacher Abu Qatada.

She acted after the Special Immigration Appeals Commission said the radical cleric could not be returned to Jordan.

Judges say he could face an unfair trial involving evidence obtained by torturing others.

The Home Office said it would further appeal, adding: “This is not the end of the road. The government remains determined to deport Abu Qatada.”

A spokesman added: “In the meantime we continue to work with the Jordanians to address the outstanding legal issues preventing deportation.”

In their judgement, Lord Dyson, sitting with Lord Justice Richards and Lord Justice Elias, said the appeals commission was entitled to think there was a risk the “impugned statements” would be admitted in evidence at a retrial. This meant there was “a real risk of a flagrant denial of justice”.

The judges said the court accepted that Qatada “is regarded as a very dangerous person”, but that was not “a relevant consideration” under human rights laws. (BBC)

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