Man arrested in Stoke after review of terrorists on licence in wake of London Bridge attack

The 34-year-old man was detained on suspicion of preparation of terrorist acts following a search of his home address.

A man has been arrested in Stoke-on-Trent following a review of terrorists released on licence in the wake of the London Bridge attack.

West Midlands Police said the 34-year-old man was detained on suspicion of preparation of terrorist acts following a search of his home address.

It comes after Usman Khan, a convicted terrorist out on licence, killed two people and injured three others in a knife attack at London Bridge on Friday.

Usman Khan was one of nine members of a terror group that plotted to bomb the London Stock Exchange
Image:Usman Khan launched a deadly knife attack in London Bridge while out on licence

A West Midlands Police spokesman said there was “no information to suggest” that the arrested man in Stoke was involved in the London Bridge attack and there was “no immediate risk to public safety”.

The force added that the search warrant was executed on Saturday “in connection to a wider on-going review of existing licence conditions of convicted terrorism offenders”.

Khan, 28, had been wearing an electronic tag when he launched his attack after being released halfway through a 16-year prison sentence over a plot to bomb the London Stock Exchange.

He was tackled by several members of the public – including ex-offenders and an off-duty policeman – before he was shot dead by officers on London Bridge.

The attack has prompted the Ministry of Justice to review the licence conditions of every convicted terrorist released from prison.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said the review applies to “probably about 74” people and he found it “repulsive” that terrorists like Khan could be released from prison after serving eight years.

Boris Johnson attends the scene of a terror attack on London Bridge
Terrorists should not get early release – Johnson

Meanwhile, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn told Sky News that convicted terrorists should “not necessarily” automatically serve their full prison sentences.

Speaking to Sky’s Sophy Ridge, Mr Corbyn said there were lessons to be learned from the London Bridge attack and there should be a “full investigation” into the circumstances around Khan’s prison sentence and subsequent release.

Jeremy Corbyn is calling for a review of the prison system
Release of terrorists ‘depends on the circumstances’

Mr Corbyn said police “had no choice” but to shoot Khan dead as they were “stuck with a situation where there was a credible threat of a bomb belt around his body”. Police confirmed after the incident that the device was a hoax.

It has been reported that Khan, who was a student and personal friend of the Islamist extremist Anjem Choudary, was given permission to travel into central London on Friday by police and the probation service.

He had also been allowed to travel to Whitehall earlier in the year.

Usman Khan's solicitor says specialists need to be involved in terrorist rehabilitation at an early stage before release
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The family of Jack Merritt, one of the two Cambridge University graduates killed in Friday’s attack, urged politicians not to enforce “draconian” sentences in the wake of the incident.

In a statement issued on Sunday, Mr Merritt’s family said: “We know Jack would not want this terrible, isolated incident to be used as a pretext by the government for introducing even more draconian sentences on prisoners, or for detaining people in prison for longer than necessary.”


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