Friday, April 08, 2016

UK: Muslim cop 'sparked a security alert when he was involved in false 999 call

A police constable made a hoax 999 call to his own force claiming a Muslim officer was going to be kidnapped by ISIS, a court heard today.

West Midlands Police were told a man, called Irfan who 'had just got back from Syria' was 'going to drive a car that evening and kidnap a police officer.'

After receiving the call on December 8 last year, the force went into 'overdrive' and a kidnap negotiator was put on standby.

Every officer across the force area was told to call their stations when they arrived at home safely.

But after arresting two suspects and interviewing them, officers believed the calls were 'malicious and false' and set about investigating why they were made.

Pc Amar Tasaddiq Hussain, 29, of Yardley, Birmingham, was charged with making the 999 call along with Adil Bashir, 25, of Small Heath, Birmingham, and Muhammad Sheikh, 30 of Bordesley Green, Birmingham.

All three denied two counts of conspiring to pervert the course of justice when they appeared at Stafford Crown Court today.

A recording of the 999 call, made at 3.41pm on December 8, 2014, was played to the jury.

Prosecutor Simon Davis said: 'The caller was saying he had been told by Irfan that he had just got back from somewhere - supposedly Syria - and that Irfan has links with ISIS

'He had been asked by Irfan to drive a car that evening in which there were going to be two others and that they were going to kidnap a police officer.

'Again, a little later in the transcript, he said he was scared for his life, was being threatened to do this and that they would not let him go.

'He said he himself was illegally in the UK and couldn't go to the police. He had been told that Irfan was illegal - in other words, an illegal immigrant.

'It was clear that the focus of that call was the man Irfan - Irfan the terrorist, that Irfan wanted to kidnap a Muslim police officer.'

He continued: 'The police listened to that call. They took it extremely seriously. They saw the content of the call as a credible threat to the security and safety of a police officer who may be kidnapped that night.

'The resources available to West Midlands Police, already overstretched, went into overdrive. Protect staff, minimise risk, maximise protection.

'Armed response teams were on heightened alert.

'The next day by 4.20pm, the police had done enough research from what the caller had told them to identify a suspect.

'Irfan was an illegal immigrant, he did exist, and he was an overstayer. At that time, Irfan Ul-Haq was arrested.

'By the time of or soon after his arrest, it was clear that the information provided by the anonymous caller and the circumstances known to the officers about Ul-Haq matched.

'Accordingly, the decision was made to arrest Ul-Haq on suspicion of kidnap.  'He was interviewed at length. He was asked: 'Are you a terrorist, are you going to kidnap a Muslim police officer?'

'However, during the course of the interviews it became obvious to the investigating officers that the call to the police was malicious and lies had been told.

'Ul-Haq was released from the custody of the Counter Terrorism team and handed over to the Immigration Department. He has subsequently returned to his home country.

'Once the police investigation realised that the call was malicious and false, they set about finding who was responsible for the call.

The court was told Pc Hussain made the hoax call after harbouring a grudge against a member of a Muslim community group who refused to make him head of security.

It heard victim Faisal Sami was head of the West Midlands Dawat-E-Islami organisation and friends with Irfan Ul-Haq, who was also a member. Hussain, Bashir and Sheikh are said to have made a number of false complaints alleging Mr Ul-Haq and Mr Sami were running sham marriages.

Mr Davis said forensic speech and audio analyst Dr Kirchubel was brought in to analyse the 999 call on December 8.

He said: 'Dr Kirchhubel took the view that the technical quality of the 999 call was good.

'There were strong indications that the caller had adopted a form of vocal disguise.

'The disguise was inconsistent, unconvincing but did not completely obscure the voice and speech patterns of the caller.

Original report here

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