The British Government has been ordered to pay £13,600 to a man who hid a terrorist suspect after a European court ruled that his human rights had been ‘violated’.
The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that Scotland Yard had abused Ismail Abdurahman’s rights to a fair trial and right to legal assistance during police interviews over a plot to attack London.
The court ordered £13,600 of Abdurahman’s legal costs must be paid by public funds.
Abdurahman hid a man after the bombing that devastated London in July 2005. He hid Hussein Osman for three days, as a manhunt which ended in the death of innocent man Jean Charles de Menezes went on.
The European court found Abdurahman’s rights to a fair trial and right to legal assistance had been breached by the Metropolitan Police, who initially questioned him as a witness but failed to follow procedure when he became a suspect.
The judgement said: “The Government [has not] demonstrated compelling reasons for restricting his access to legal advice and failing to inform him of his right to remain silent.
“It was significant that there was no basis in domestic law for the police to choose not to caution Mr Abdurahman at the point at which he had started to incriminate himself.”
The European court, however, refused to award the full £36,000 that Abdurahman’s lawyers asked for, and did not conclude he had been wrongly convicted following the terror plot.
Abdurahman was jailed for eight years for giving shelter to Osman – one of five extremists who attempted to bomb the London transport network.
The bombers had made crude explosive devices using chapati flour, hydrogen peroxide and shrapnel, which failed to explode when the detonators were activated.