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Extremist jailed over MP knife threats

An IT graduate who posted messages on an Islamic extremist website calling on Muslims to attack British MPs who voted in favour of the war in Iraq has been jailed for 12 years.

Bilal Zaheer Ahmad (24) posted the threat on a US-based website a day after a Muslim woman had been jailed for trying to murder a Labour MP, Bristol Crown Court heard.

Mr Justice Royce jailed Ahmad for 12 years with an additional five years' extended period on licence. The judge told him: "Whatever our views on the Iraq war we are a democracy. You became a viper in our midst, willing to go as far as possible to strike at the heart of our system," he added.

Bristol Crown Court heard that Ahmad listed the pro-war politicians on the website and urged other would-be fanatics to "raise the knife of jihad" against them.

Ahmad also posted a link to Tesco's website which listed cheap knives for sale and urged followers to carry out attacks.

After the posts were reported, the US-based website was shut down and police launched a hunt for the person responsible.

Ahmad, who at the time was living in Dunstall Hill, Dunstall, Wolverhampton, was arrested in his car on November 10, 2010.

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