Abu Hamza al-Masri
Overview
 
Abu Hamza al-Masri (born 15 April 1958, Alexandria) is an Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

ian Sunni activist known for his preaching of a violent and politicised interpretation of Islam, also known as militant
Militant
The word militant, which is both an adjective and a noun, usually is used to mean vigorously active, combative and aggressive, especially in support of a cause, as in 'militant reformers'. It comes from the 15th century Latin "militare" meaning "to serve as a soldier"...

 Islamism
Islamism
Islamism also , lit., "Political Islam" is set of ideologies holding that Islam is not only a religion but also a political system. Islamism is a controversial term, and definitions of it sometimes vary...

 or jihadism
Jihadism
Jihadism is a term to describe the renewed focus on armed jihad in radical Islamic fundamentalism....

. He is currently in prison in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

.
Abu Hamza al-Masri was born in Alexandria, Egypt as Mustafa Kamel Mustafa in 1958, the son of a middle class
Middle class
The middle class is any class of people in the middle of a societal hierarchy. In Weberian socio-economic terms, the middle class is the broad group of people in contemporary society who fall socio-economically between the working class and upper class....

 army officer
Officer (armed forces)
An officer is a member of an armed force or uniformed service who holds a position of authority. Commissioned officers derive authority directly from a sovereign power and, as such, hold a commission charging them with the duties and responsibilities of a specific office or position...

. In 1979, he entered the UK on a student visa.

His initial reaction to life in Britain
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 was to describe it as "a paradise, where you could do anything you wanted".
Encyclopedia
Abu Hamza al-Masri (born 15 April 1958, Alexandria) is an Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

ian Sunni activist known for his preaching of a violent and politicised interpretation of Islam, also known as militant
Militant
The word militant, which is both an adjective and a noun, usually is used to mean vigorously active, combative and aggressive, especially in support of a cause, as in 'militant reformers'. It comes from the 15th century Latin "militare" meaning "to serve as a soldier"...

 Islamism
Islamism
Islamism also , lit., "Political Islam" is set of ideologies holding that Islam is not only a religion but also a political system. Islamism is a controversial term, and definitions of it sometimes vary...

 or jihadism
Jihadism
Jihadism is a term to describe the renewed focus on armed jihad in radical Islamic fundamentalism....

. He is currently in prison in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

.

Early life

Abu Hamza al-Masri was born in Alexandria, Egypt as Mustafa Kamel Mustafa in 1958, the son of a middle class
Middle class
The middle class is any class of people in the middle of a societal hierarchy. In Weberian socio-economic terms, the middle class is the broad group of people in contemporary society who fall socio-economically between the working class and upper class....

 army officer
Officer (armed forces)
An officer is a member of an armed force or uniformed service who holds a position of authority. Commissioned officers derive authority directly from a sovereign power and, as such, hold a commission charging them with the duties and responsibilities of a specific office or position...

. In 1979, he entered the UK on a student visa.

His initial reaction to life in Britain
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 was to describe it as "a paradise, where you could do anything you wanted". He studied civil engineering at Brighton Polytechnic.

On 16 May 1980, he married Valerie Traverso, a Roman Catholic convert
Convert
The convert or try, in American football known as "point after", and Canadian football "Point after touchdown", is a one-scrimmage down played immediately after a touchdown during which the scoring team is allowed to attempt to score an extra one point by kicking the ball through the uprights , or...

 to Islam
Islam
Islam . The most common are and .   : Arabic pronunciation varies regionally. The first vowel ranges from ~~. The second vowel ranges from ~~~...

, and had a son, Mohammed Mustafa Kamel, whom Masri later separated from his mother when the boy was four years old. His son did not see his mother again for another twelve years. He acquired British citizenship
Citizenship
Citizenship is the state of being a citizen of a particular social, political, national, or human resource community. Citizenship status, under social contract theory, carries with it both rights and responsibilities...

 following three years of marriage and acquired a job as a bouncer
Bouncer
Bouncer or The Bouncer may refer to:* Bouncer , a person who provides security at a public venue* Bouncer or BNC, a piece of software used to relay traffic and connections in computer networksIn sport:...

 for a peep show
Peep show
A peep show or peepshow is an exhibition of pictures, objects or people viewed through a small hole or magnifying glass. Though historically a peep show was a form of entertainment provided by wandering showmen, nowadays it more commonly refers a presentation of a sex show or pornographic film...

 in Soho
Soho
Soho is an area of the City of Westminster and part of the West End of London. Long established as an entertainment district, for much of the 20th century Soho had a reputation for sex shops as well as night life and film industry. Since the early 1980s, the area has undergone considerable...

. In 1984, he divorced his wife. Supporters suggest that this occurred because he found out she had failed to divorce her previous husband until 1982. However, his former wife has blamed the divorce on Masri having an affair with a prostitute.
Valerie, 51 (in 2007, when this citation was published on The Sun), said: “I can confirm that one of the reasons our marriage broke up was my husband’s infidelity with a prostitute. [...]

He would come in late and I didn’t know where he was going. [...]

I told him things had gone too far and I was leaving. He was responding by saying he would change and would dedicate himself to Islam.”


According to the Sun newspaper, this version of events was supported by a former friend of Masri.

A former pal told how Masri had a fling with a hooker behind his first wife’s back and said: “He certainly had an eye for the women.”

Masri, now 53 and with hooks for hands and only one eye, was working part-time as a nightclub bouncer in London’s West End.

The pal said: “He hardly drank and didn’t smoke, but he certainly had an eye for the women even though he was married.

“While I knew him he had a fling with one of the prostitutes who came into the club.

"He told me his wife eventually found out and he had to confess what he'd been up to.


In 1984, he remarried, to a woman named Nadjet, with whom he has seven children.

In the early 1990s, Masri lived in Bosnia
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina , sometimes called Bosnia-Herzegovina or simply Bosnia, is a country in Southern Europe, on the Balkan Peninsula. Bordered by Croatia to the north, west and south, Serbia to the east, and Montenegro to the southeast, Bosnia and Herzegovina is almost landlocked, except for the...

, with a forged identity document, where he fought alongside Bosniaks
Bosniaks
The Bosniaks or Bosniacs are a South Slavic ethnic group, living mainly in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with a smaller minority also present in other lands of the Balkan Peninsula especially in Serbia, Montenegro and Croatia...

 (Bosnian Muslims) against Serbs
Serbs
The Serbs are a South Slavic ethnic group of the Balkans and southern Central Europe. Serbs are located mainly in Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and form a sizable minority in Croatia, the Republic of Macedonia and Slovenia. Likewise, Serbs are an officially recognized minority in...

 and Croats
Croats
Croats are a South Slavic ethnic group mostly living in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and nearby countries. There are around 4 million Croats living inside Croatia and up to 4.5 million throughout the rest of the world. Responding to political, social and economic pressure, many Croats have...

 during the Bosnian War
Bosnian War
The Bosnian War or the War in Bosnia and Herzegovina was an international armed conflict that took place in Bosnia and Herzegovina between April 1992 and December 1995. The war involved several sides...

.

He now uses a distinctive hook prosthesis
Prosthesis
In medicine, a prosthesis, prosthetic, or prosthetic limb is an artificial device extension that replaces a missing body part. It is part of the field of biomechatronics, the science of using mechanical devices with human muscle, skeleton, and nervous systems to assist or enhance motor control...

 as his right hand – which on 21 January 2003 would spark the front page headline "SLING YOUR HOOK" from The Sun newspaper, urging him to leave Britain.

In the 1999 "bomb plot" trial of eight Britons and two Algerians in Yemen
Yemen
The Republic of Yemen , commonly known as Yemen , is a country located in the Middle East, occupying the southwestern to southern end of the Arabian Peninsula. It is bordered by Saudi Arabia to the north, the Red Sea to the west, and Oman to the east....

, Masri's eldest son, Mohammed Mustafa Kamel (at the time 17 years old), was sentenced to three years in prison and his stepson, Mohsin Ghalain, to seven years. The prosecution alleged that Masri had sent the men to Yemen to carry out terrorist attacks.

Religious life

Masri, formerly the imam
Imam
An imam is an Islamic leadership position, often the worship leader of a mosque and the Muslim community. Similar to spiritual leaders, the imam is the one who leads Islamic worship services. More often, the community turns to the mosque imam if they have a religious question...

 of Finsbury Park Mosque, runs "Supporters of Sharia
Sharia
Sharia law, is the moral code and religious law of Islam. Sharia is derived from two primary sources of Islamic law: the precepts set forth in the Quran, and the example set by the Islamic prophet Muhammad in the Sunnah. Fiqh jurisprudence interprets and extends the application of sharia to...

", a radical group that believed in a strict interpretation of Islamic law
Sharia
Sharia law, is the moral code and religious law of Islam. Sharia is derived from two primary sources of Islamic law: the precepts set forth in the Quran, and the example set by the Islamic prophet Muhammad in the Sunnah. Fiqh jurisprudence interprets and extends the application of sharia to...

. In 2003, he addressed a rally in central London
Central London
Central London is the innermost part of London, England. There is no official or commonly accepted definition of its area, but its characteristics are understood to include a high density built environment, high land values, an elevated daytime population and a concentration of regionally,...

 called by the Islamic al-Muhajiroun
Al-Muhajiroun
Al-Muhajiroun is a banned Islamist organisation that was based in Britain and which has been linked to international terrorism, homophobia and anti-semitism...

, where members spoke of their support for Islamist goals like the creation of a caliphate
Caliphate
The term caliphate, "dominion of a caliph " , refers to the first system of government established in Islam and represented the political unity of the Muslim Ummah...

 and destroying democracy
Democracy
Democracy is generally defined as a form of government in which all adult citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives. Ideally, this includes equal participation in the proposal, development and passage of legislation into law...

.

On 4 February 2003 (after being suspended since April 2002), Masri was dismissed from his position at the Finsbury Park mosque by the Charity Commission
Charity Commission
The Charity Commission for England and Wales is the non-ministerial government department that regulates registered charities in England and Wales....

, the government department that regulates charities in England and Wales
Wales
Wales is a country that is part of the United Kingdom and the island of Great Britain, bordered by England to its east and the Atlantic Ocean and Irish Sea to its west. It has a population of three million, and a total area of 20,779 km²...

. After his ejection from the mosque, he preached outside the gates until May 2004, when he was arrested at the start of US extradition proceedings against him (see below).

Masri has publicly expressed support for Islamist goals like creating a caliphate
Caliphate
The term caliphate, "dominion of a caliph " , refers to the first system of government established in Islam and represented the political unity of the Muslim Ummah...

, and for Osama bin Laden
Osama bin Laden
Osama bin Mohammed bin Awad bin Laden was the founder of the militant Islamist organization Al-Qaeda, the jihadist organization responsible for the September 11 attacks on the United States and numerous other mass-casualty attacks against civilian and military targets...

. He wrote a paper entitled El Ansar (The Victor) in which he expressed support for the actions of the Armed Islamic Group
Armed Islamic Group
The Armed Islamic Group is an Islamist organisation that wants to overthrow the Algerian government and replace it with an Islamic state...

 (GIA) in Algeria
Algeria
Algeria , officially the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria , also formally referred to as the Democratic and Popular Republic of Algeria, is a country in the Maghreb region of Northwest Africa with Algiers as its capital.In terms of land area, it is the largest country in Africa and the Arab...

, but he later rejected them when they started killing civilians.

He is an associate of Abdullah el-Faisal
Abdullah el-Faisal
Abdullah el-Faisal is a muslim cleric who preached in the United Kingdom until he was convicted of stirring up racial hatred and urging his followers to murder Jews, Hindus, Christians, and...

, a Jamaican Muslim convert cleric who preached in the UK until he was imprisoned for urging his followers to murder Jews, Hindus, Christians and Americans, subsequently being deported to Jamaica in 2007.

Extradition to US

On 27 May 2004, Masri was detained on remand by British authorities and appeared before magistrate
Magistrate
A magistrate is an officer of the state; in modern usage the term usually refers to a judge or prosecutor. This was not always the case; in ancient Rome, a magistratus was one of the highest government officers and possessed both judicial and executive powers. Today, in common law systems, a...

s at the start of a process to try and extradite
Extradition
Extradition is the official process whereby one nation or state surrenders a suspected or convicted criminal to another nation or state. Between nation states, extradition is regulated by treaties...

 him under the Extradition Act 2003
Extradition Act 2003
The Extradition Act 2003 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It came into force on 1 January 2004 and all import and export extradition requests submitted or received from this date are covered by the Act...

 to the United States, where he had been named in an indictment
Indictment
An indictment , in the common-law legal system, is a formal accusation that a person has committed a crime. In jurisdictions that maintain the concept of felonies, the serious criminal offence is a felony; jurisdictions that lack the concept of felonies often use that of an indictable offence—an...

 of supporting James Ujaama in an attempt to establish a terrorist training camp in late 1999 and early 2000 near Bly
Bly, Oregon
Bly is an unincorporated community in Klamath County, Oregon, United States. It is about east of Klamath Falls. , the population was 486.- History :...

, Oregon and providing aid to al-Qaeda. Ujaama is a US citizen who had met Masri in England in 1999 and was indicted in the US for providing aid to al-Qaeda, attempting to establish the terrorist training camp, and for running a web site advocating global violent jihad
Jihad
Jihad , an Islamic term, is a religious duty of Muslims. In Arabic, the word jihād translates as a noun meaning "struggle". Jihad appears 41 times in the Quran and frequently in the idiomatic expression "striving in the way of God ". A person engaged in jihad is called a mujahid; the plural is...

. Masri was in Britain throughout the relevant period.

However, as a member state of the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

, the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 is party to an agreement whereby extradition must be refused to any country which has the death penalty and where the suspect is to be tried in a capital case. This will not prevent his extradition to the United States, but it will prevent any court from imposing a sentence of death, should he be found guilty. British courts initially permitted his extradition to the US on 15 November 2007, however he appealed against his extradition to the European Court of Human Rights
European Court of Human Rights
The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg is a supra-national court established by the European Convention on Human Rights and hears complaints that a contracting state has violated the human rights enshrined in the Convention and its protocols. Complaints can be brought by individuals or...

, Europe's highest court. In the meantime, Masri was sentenced to a seven-year prison sentence on his conviction on various offences for which he was arrested after the start of the US extradition proceedings (see below). By November 2009 he would normally have been eligible for release.

On 8 July 2010 the European Court of Human Rights
European Court of Human Rights
The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg is a supra-national court established by the European Convention on Human Rights and hears complaints that a contracting state has violated the human rights enshrined in the Convention and its protocols. Complaints can be brought by individuals or...

 indefinitely blocked Masri's extradition to the United States to face terrorism charges until the court was satisfied that Masri wouldn't be treated inhumanely. The court based its judgement on the European Convention on Human Rights
European Convention on Human Rights
The Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms is an international treaty to protect human rights and fundamental freedoms in Europe. Drafted in 1950 by the then newly formed Council of Europe, the convention entered into force on 3 September 1953...

 (ECHR) which applies to British law. It is an absolute prohibition for a signatory to the ECHR to remove anyone to a place where they would be subject to inhumane or degrading treatment.

In past cases, the ECHR has prevented the UK from deporting suspected foreign terrorists to places where they might be executed or tortured. In Masri's case this has been extended to refusing extradition to a country where he might be jailed for life and where the prison regime is judged to be too harsh. The ruling would apply to any extradition to the US unless American authorities can guarantee in advance that the suspect will not be incarcerated in a so-called supermax
Supermax
Supermax is the name used to describe "control-unit" prisons, or units within prisons, which represent the most secure levels of custody in the prison systems of certain countries...

prison. The court said there should be further legal argument on whether life without parole would be a breach of human rights. The court asked for fresh submissions on whether Masri (who is serving a terrorist-related prison term in Britain) and other suspects awaiting extradition would face inhumane treatment in the US if they are sent there to stand trial. Yemen also requested Masri's extradition in May 2004.

On 19 October 2010, a decision on whether Masri will keep his British passport will hinge on whether he has lost his Egyptian citizenship, a tribunal has heard. It was announced on 5 November 2010 that Masri would keep his British passport.

Arrests and convictions for UK offences

On 26 August 2004, Masri was arrested by British police under section 41 of the Terrorism Act 2000
Terrorism Act 2000
The Terrorism Act 2000 is the first of a number of general Terrorism Acts passed by the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It superseded and repealed the Prevention of Terrorism Act 1989 and the Northern Ireland Act 1996...

 which covers the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism
Terrorism
Terrorism is the systematic use of terror, especially as a means of coercion. In the international community, however, terrorism has no universally agreed, legally binding, criminal law definition...

. He was de-arrested on 31 August 2004 (not released, he remained on remand for the US extradition case). Almost two months later, on 19 October 2004, he was charged with 16 crimes under the provisions of various British statutes, including encouraging the murder
Murder
Murder is the unlawful killing, with malice aforethought, of another human being, and generally this state of mind distinguishes murder from other forms of unlawful homicide...

 of non-Muslims, and intent to stir up racial hatred
Racism
Racism is the belief that inherent different traits in human racial groups justify discrimination. In the modern English language, the term "racism" is used predominantly as a pejorative epithet. It is applied especially to the practice or advocacy of racial discrimination of a pernicious nature...

. The trial commenced on 5 July 2005 but was adjourned, and resumed on 9 January 2006. On 7 February 2006, he was found guilty on eleven charges and not guilty on four:
  • Guilty of six charges of soliciting to murder under the Offences against the Person Act 1861
    Offences Against The Person Act 1861
    The Offences against the Person Act 1861 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. It consolidated provisions related to offences against the person from a number of earlier statutes into a single Act...

    ; not guilty on three further such charges.
  • Guilty of three charges related to "using threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour with the intention of stirring up racial hatred" under the Public Order Act 1986
    Public Order Act 1986
    The Public Order Act 1986 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It creates a number of public order offences. They replace similar common law offences and parts of the Public Order Act 1936...

    , not guilty on one further such charge.
  • Guilty of one further charge of owning recordings related to "stirring up racial hatred".
  • Guilty of one charge of possessing "terrorist encyclopaedia" under the Terrorism Act 2000, s58. The charges under the Terrorism Act of 2000 related to his possession of the Encyclopedia of Afghan Jihad
    Encyclopedia of Afghan Jihad
    Encyclopedia of Afghan Jihad is a manual of Jihad in eleven volumes, detailing how to make and use explosives and firearms, how to plan and carry out assassinations and other terrorist acts, and much more. It was found in the London residence of Islamic cleric Sheikh Abu Hamza al-Masri in May 2004...

    and an Al Qaeda Handbook
    Al Qaeda Handbook
    The Al Qaeda Handbook is an extensive manual for how to wage war, allegedly written by Osama bin Laden's extremist group, Al Qaeda.This handbook provides religious justifications and quotations from the Qur'an throughout. It was first seized by British authorities in a raid on an Al Qaeda cell in...

    , and to propaganda materials produced by Masri.


He was sentenced to seven years' imprisonment. He has already been in jail since May 2004. In sentencing, Mr Justice Hughes
Anthony Hughes
Sir Anthony Philip Gilson Hughes , styled The Rt Hon. Lord Justice Hughes, became a Lord Justice of Appeal on 24 April 2006, following the retirement of Lord Justice Rose...

 said Masri had "helped to create an atmosphere in which to kill has become regarded by some as not only a legitimate course but a moral and religious duty in pursuit of perceived justice".

On 18 January 2007, Lord Justice Hughes made the order for the recovery of the full costs of the defence of the race-hate charges, estimated in excess of 1 million pounds. This judgement was based on his view that "the story I have been told today (by Masri) is simply not true" that he [Masri] had no share in a £220,000 house in Greenford, west London. Masri had claimed it belonged to his sister. The court also found that Masri was contributing £9000 a year for private education for his children.

Although Masri would normally have completed his sentence and be freed, he is still being held on remand in Belmarsh Prison whilst the US seeks to extradite him (see above).

Quotations

Masri claims that the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster
Space Shuttle Columbia disaster
The Space Shuttle Columbia disaster occurred on February 1, 2003, when shortly before it was scheduled to conclude its 28th mission, STS-107, the Space Shuttle Columbia disintegrated over Texas and Louisiana during re-entry into the Earth's atmosphere, resulting in the death of all seven crew members...

 was a sign from God
God
God is the English name given to a singular being in theistic and deistic religions who is either the sole deity in monotheism, or a single deity in polytheism....

:
"Killing of the kafir
Kafir
Kafir is an Arabic term used in a Islamic doctrinal sense, usually translated as "unbeliever" or "disbeliever"...

 (non-believer) for any reason you can say it is OK, even if there is no reason for it." He called on his followers to poison, ambush and kill non-believers and added: "You must have a stand with your heart, with your tongue, with your money, with your hand, with your sword, with your Kalashnikov
AK-47
The AK-47 is a selective-fire, gas-operated 7.62×39mm assault rifle, first developed in the Soviet Union by Mikhail Kalashnikov. It is officially known as Avtomat Kalashnikova . It is also known as a Kalashnikov, an "AK", or in Russian slang, Kalash.Design work on the AK-47 began in the last year...

. Don't ask shall I do this, just do it."

Of licensors for alcohol sellers, he said: "Make sure that the person who gave him the licence for that wine shop doesn't exist any more on the Earth. Finish him up. Give him dawa (inviting non-Muslims to accept the truth of Islam). If he doesn't respect dawa, kill him."

He suggested that people coined the term suicide attack
Suicide attack
A suicide attack is a type of attack in which the attacker expects or intends to die in the process.- Historical :...

to put others off it. "It is not called suicide – this is called shahada, martyring, because if the only way to hurt the enemies of Islam except by taking your life for that, then it is allowed ... [T]he person who hinders Allah's rule, this man must be eliminated".

In January 2006, while on trial, he accused the Jewish people of being "blasphemous, treacherous and dirty" and explained that this was "why Hitler
Adolf Hitler
Adolf Hitler was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the National Socialist German Workers Party , commonly referred to as the Nazi Party). He was Chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945, and head of state from 1934 to 1945...

 was sent into the world". He also called for "a world dominated by a caliph
Caliph
The Caliph is the head of state in a Caliphate, and the title for the ruler of the Islamic Ummah, an Islamic community ruled by the Shari'ah. It is a transcribed version of the Arabic word   which means "successor" or "representative"...

, sitting in the White House
White House
The White House is the official residence and principal workplace of the president of the United States. Located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW in Washington, D.C., the house was designed by Irish-born James Hoban, and built between 1792 and 1800 of white-painted Aquia sandstone in the Neoclassical...

". Whilst under cross-examination, Hamza claimed the Jews control the Foreign Office, the media and the money supply
Money supply
In economics, the money supply or money stock, is the total amount of money available in an economy at a specific time. There are several ways to define "money," but standard measures usually include currency in circulation and demand deposits .Money supply data are recorded and published, usually...

 in Britain and the US.

Profile

Abu Hamza al-Masri was featured in the Daily Mail
Daily Mail
The Daily Mail is a British daily middle-market tabloid newspaper owned by the Daily Mail and General Trust. First published in 1896 by Lord Northcliffe, it is the United Kingdom's second biggest-selling daily newspaper after The Sun. Its sister paper The Mail on Sunday was launched in 1982...

and The Sun
The Sun (newspaper)
The Sun is a daily national tabloid newspaper published in the United Kingdom and owned by News Corporation. Sister editions are published in Glasgow and Dublin...

, which often called for his deportation, up to his eventual conviction. He was nicknamed "The Hook" and "Captain Hook" by some British tabloid newspapers because of the hook on his right hand. Such tabloid coverage of figures like Masri, Omar Bakri Muhammad
Omar Bakri Muhammad
Omar Bakri Muhammad is an Islamist militant leader who was instrumental in developing Hizb ut-Tahrir into a major organization in the United Kingdom before leaving the group and heading another Islamist organisation, Al-Muhajiroun, until its disbandment in 2004.For several years Bakri was one of...

 and Anjem Choudary
Anjem Choudary
Anjem Choudary is a British former solicitor, and, before it was proscribed, spokesman for the Islamist group Islam4UK. He is married, has four children, and lives in Ilford, London....

 have been blamed by groups like Islamophobia
Islamophobia
Islamophobia describes prejudice against, hatred or irrational fear of Islam or MuslimsThe term dates back to the late 1980s or early 1990s, but came into common usage after the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States....

 Watch, iEngage, Muslim Association of Britain
Muslim Association of Britain
The Muslim Association of Britain is an Islamic organisation in the United Kingdom established in 1997.-Anti-war activities:Along with Stop the War Coalition and Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, it has co-sponsored various demonstrations against the 2003 invasion and occupation of Iraq...

 and others of presenting a distorted image of normal Muslims in Great Britain.

Masri was briefly interviewed by John Safran
John Safran
John Safran is an Australian documentary maker and radio broadcaster, known for combining humour with explorations into religion and other issues...

 in the comedy documentary John Safran vs God
John Safran vs God
John Safran vs God is an 8 part television documentary series by John Safran which was broadcast on SBS TV of Australia in 2004. It has been described in a media release as "John Safran's most audacious project yet". It had a much more serious tone than Safran's previous work Music Jamboree...

regarding fatwa
Fatwa
A fatwā in the Islamic faith is a juristic ruling concerning Islamic law issued by an Islamic scholar. In Sunni Islam any fatwā is non-binding, whereas in Shia Islam it could be considered by an individual as binding, depending on his or her relation to the scholar. The person who issues a fatwā...

s.

On 28 May 2009, three of al-Masri's sons were sentenced to imprisonment by Southwark Crown Court for a two-year fraud involving stolen cars. Hamza Kamel, aged 22 and Mohamed Mostafa, aged 27 (both from Acton
Acton, London
Acton is a district of west London, England, located in the London Borough of Ealing. It is situated west of Charing Cross.At the time of the 2001 census, Acton, comprising the wards of East Acton, Acton Central, South Acton and Southfield, had a population of 53,689 people...

, London) ran the scam operation with Masri's stepson Mohssin Ghailam, aged 28. Four other men were jailed on related charges. In July 2010 in was reported that another son, Yasser Kamel aged 20, was sentenced to 12 months in youth detention after pleading guilty to one count of violent disorder at anti-Israel protests in January 2009.

The TaxPayers' Alliance
TaxPayers' Alliance
The TaxPayers' Alliance is a British pressure group and taxpayers union formed in 2004 to campaign for a low tax society. The group had about 18,000 registered supporters as of 2008, and claimed to have 55,000 by September 2010....

 estimates father-of-eight Hamza has so far cost Britain £2.75 million in welfare payments, council housing, NHS and prison bills, trials and legal appeals.

See also

  • Mohammed Haydar Zammar
    Mohammed Haydar Zammar
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    David Myatt, - also known as David Wulstan Myatt and formerly known as Abdul-Aziz ibn Myatt - is the founder of The Numinous Way, a former British Muslim, and a former neo-nazi....

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  • Anjem Choudary
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    Anjem Choudary is a British former solicitor, and, before it was proscribed, spokesman for the Islamist group Islam4UK. He is married, has four children, and lives in Ilford, London....

  • Abu Uzair
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    Omar Bakri Muhammad is an Islamist militant leader who was instrumental in developing Hizb ut-Tahrir into a major organization in the United Kingdom before leaving the group and heading another Islamist organisation, Al-Muhajiroun, until its disbandment in 2004.For several years Bakri was one of...


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