Police State Britain: Lawyer condemns 'wild west' police raid
Le 5 juin 06 à 07:42, Laurence a écrit :
A family caught up in Friday's police operation to stop an alleged terror
plot yesterday spoke of how they thought they were about to die when police
armed with machine guns smashed their front door and stormed through their
terrace house in the dark of night.
Three men, a woman and an eight-month-old baby were asleep in their rented
home on Lansdown Road, in east London, when officers from Scotland Yard's
S019 elite firearms unit made their way into the house. The family live next
door to Mohammed Abdul Kahar and his brother Abul Koyair, who were arrested
at around 4am by police hunting for traces of chemicals which MI5 feared
would be used to stage an attack on Britain.
The family, who originally came from Gujerat in western India, said they
barely knew their neighbours, whose heritage is Bangladeshi. They rented the
house from the father of the two arrested men and said the only time they
spoke to him was when he came to collect their rent. Kahar was shot in the
operation on his home at number 46 and following hospital treatment was
yesterday being questioned at Paddington Green high-security police station.
Their family claim they have nothing to do with terrorism.
Yesterday, Hanif [he does not wish his second name to be published], the
brother of one of the tenants of number 48, said when he saw the police with
machine guns he thought they were going to kill him. "I was so terrified, I
thought I was going to die," he said.
Hanif had been asleep when he heard a commotion. He got up as the bedroom
door was forced open by police. "I saw a guy with a machine gun pointing and
he hit me on the side of the head straight away with the butt. Another man
hit me behind my knees, then tied my hands with plasticuffs. I saw blood
coming from my head. The guy noticed it and took a bandage out and put it on
Hanif was visiting his brother Ayub - a local imam who was working at the
time of the raid - who lives in the house with his partner, Rukhsana, their
baby and his two nephews, Feroz, 32, and Inayat, 35.
Rukhsana, 39, said she had gone to the bathroom when she found strange men
in the house. She ran to her room. "I thought they were thieves," she said.
"They said take your baby ... I realised they were not thieves but police.
When we had to leave I said could I prepare some milk for the baby and put
some clothes on because I was in my nightie but they said no."
Each of the family had their DNA and fingerprints taken and were asked about
the basement under their house used by the alleged terror suspects. They
said they knew nothing about it except they had assumed it was a gym. None
of the neighbouring family were arrested and they were released without
charge. They have not been allowed to return to their home, which has been
The family are being advised by the solicitor Gareth Peirce, who is
representing the relatives of Jean Charles de Menezes who was shot dead by
anti-terrorist police in a botched operation. "They were never arrested,
instead they were assaulted and unlawfully detained. Police officers are
particularly warned that any blow to the head is potentially fatal. This was
as lawless as the wild west."
Yesterday, local Muslims sought assurances that the whole raid was not
undertaken on flimsy evidence.
Local police chiefs began touring the local mosques on Friday afternoon, as
part of an effort at "community reassurance".