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European Court fight woman 'is Abu Hamza's daughter-in-law'

Published 05/02/2016

Tory MP Philip Davies told Parliament the woman is in fact Abu Hamza's daughter-in-law
Tory MP Philip Davies told Parliament the woman is in fact Abu Hamza's daughter-in-law

A Tory MP has defied an order banning identification of radical cleric Abu Hamza's Moroccan daughter-in-law after her fight against deportation was boosted by the European Court of Justice (ECJ) advocate general.

The Home Office wants to deport the woman after she served a jail sentence for attempting to smuggle a mobile phone Sim card to Hamza in Belmarsh high security prison in London in 2010.

But the woman has a British child and, in a preliminary opinion, the ECJ advocate general has ruled that European Union law means the UK cannot automatically deport her simply because she has a criminal record unless she is deemed to pose a "serious" threat to society.

The opinion states that deporting someone who is the sole carer for an EU national child is "in principle contrary to EU law".

There is an order banning media from naming the woman, who is referred to as CS in court documents.

But Conservative MP Philip Davies told the House of Commons on Friday that the woman is the daughter-in-law of Abu Hamza, adding: "This is a very serious matter and is something that this country and this House should be aware of."

Mr Davies did not reveal the woman's name, but raising a point of order in the House of Commons, he called for an urgent statement from a Home Office minister on the matter.

He said: "I'm very surprised that there isn't a statement today in the House.

"You may have seen the reports in the newspapers yesterday that European judges have ruled that a foreign Moroccan criminal cannot be deported from the country despite the Home Office saying that she committed serious offences which threaten the values of society."

He went on: "Surely this is something that should be raised in this House, that the Home Office minister should be making a statement about today?

"Have you had any indication that the Home Office intend to make any kind of statement about this issue?"

Replying, Deputy Speaker Lindsay Hoyle said: "I don't think I'm going to shock you by saying I've had absolutely no indication of anybody coming forward with a statement.

"What I would say quite rightly as ever - you have raised it, it is on the record and I'm sure that people will be listening in different departments as we continue with this debate."

The ECJ advocate general's opinion follows a request from judges in the Upper Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) about the case.

The ECJ said the UK had argued that ''CS's serious criminal offence represented an obvious threat to the preservation of that Member State's social cohesion and of the values of its society''.

It added: ''The Advocate General considers that expulsion is, in principle, contrary to EU law but that, in exceptional circumstances, such a measure may be adopted, provided that it observes the principle of proportionality and is based on the conduct of the person concerned (conduct that must constitute a genuine, present and sufficiently serious threat affecting one of the fundamental interests of society) and on imperative reasons relating to public security.''

The Advocate General's opinion is not binding on the ECJ and its judges will now deliberate and deliver a judgment at a later date.

The case remains before the upper tribunal in the UK, pending that final decision of the European court in Luxembourg.

Abu Hamza is currently serving life in the US for terrorism offences. He was previously jailed in the UK for inciting violence and was extradited to New York after an eight-year legal battle.

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