Irish Independent : 'Major terrorist plot' amounted to one email and some phonecalls

Thursday, April 23, 2009

'Major terrorist plot' amounted to one email and some phonecalls

By Jonathan Brown in London | April 23, 2009

The case against 12 Muslim men involved in what UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown described as a "major terrorist plot" amounted to one email and a handful of ambiguous telephone conversations, it emerged last night after the men were released without charge.

Eleven Pakistani students and one British man were freed after extensive searches of 14 addresses in north-west England failed to locate evidence of terrorist activity, according to security sources.

Yesterday, the UK government's own reviewer of terrorism legislation said he would investigate the case.

According to security sources, the operation was launched after the interception of telephone calls and emails which pointed towards a bombing campaign orchestrated by al-Qa'ida.

But yesterday a senior Pakistani defence official said the UK authorities had failed to consult them adequately before carrying out the arrests and greater co-operation would have avoided "embarrassing mistakes" for the government.

Muslim groups and lawyers for the 12 men arrested two weeks ago said the police operation had been a fiasco.

(© Independent News and Media)