Ricin!: The Inside Story of the Terror Plot That Never Was
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
In January 2003, the British media splashed the news that anti-terror police had disrupted an Al-Qaeda cell, poised to unleash the deadly poison ricin on the capital. Police had reportedly found traces of ricin, as well as a panoply of bomb and poison-making equipment in the cell’s ‘factory of death’ – a shabby flat in north London. ‘This danger is present and real, and with us now’ announced prime minister Tony Blair.
But, when the ‘ricin plot’ came to trial at the Old Bailey, a very different story emerged: there was no ricin and no sophisticated plot. Rarely has a legal case been so shamelessly distorted by government, media and security forces to push their own ‘tough on terror’ agendas. In this meticulously researched and compellingly written book, Lawrence Archer, the jury foreman at the trial, and journalist Fiona Bawdon, give the definitive story of the ricin plot, the trial and its aftermath.
Equipment. However, Sihali’s prints had been detected on an envelope containing stolen and altered passports, which had been found in a bed base at 240 High Road, Ilford, the property he shared with David Khalef. David Khalef’s prints had been found on the set of recipes found in his bag at Thetford, but not on any of the Wood Green items. Kirsty Ball also testified that fingerprints belonging to Mohammed Meguerba, Bourgass’s associate who had fled to Algeria after being questioned by police, had.
Inevitably a daunting and demanding task. Jurors were no longer allowed to use the Old Bailey cafeteria, but had to wait in a separate lobby for the jury usher to escort them to their room. Several days into their deliberations, the judge advised he would accept a majority jury verdict of ten-to-one. Still the jury continued to deliberate. Finally, on 8 April 2005, after three weeks of deliberations, the jury had reached verdicts on every charge but one, and sent a note to the judge to that.
Belief. xiii Archer T01953 00 pre 13 30/07/2010 10:51 xiv Ricin! Fiona Bawdon would like to thank the following people: My family – Tim, Caleb and Saul – for everything, always. Lawrence Archer, for putting his head above the parapet (and keeping it there). Robert Brown and Gemma Tombs at Corker Binning for their expertise, generously and speedily given. Wesley Gryk for his advice and help with Chapter 3. Archer T01953 00 pre 14 30/07/2010 10:51 Introduction One Sunday morning, almost.
Ricin is extremely difficult to manufacture outside a laboratory. There are simpler and more readily available ways of killing people, if that is your intent. To paraphrase Bourgass’s defence barrister, Michel Massih QC: Feddag’s flat was directly above a pharmacy; if Bourgass wanted to kill anyone, why go to all the trouble of making ricin when he could simply nip downstairs and buy rat poison. Archer T01953 01 text 142 30/07/2010 10:51 8 Backlash ‘Read the Daily Mail tomorrow; you’ll be.
Trial, they still felt a degree of responsibility for them now. For the jurors, this was an apocalyptic moment: a turning point in their lives. They had been obliged to do jury service as part of their civic duty; they had duly put their working lives on hold for six months while they sat on a difficult and demanding case. They had sworn to put aside prejudices and preconceptions and try the case solely on the evidence. They had been given a challenging and stressful task and consequently had.