Abu Qatada denied bail over seized 'jihadist files'

'It was the appellant's obligation to understand the conditions of bail and ensure they were adhered to'

The extremist cleric Abu Qatada lost his bid for freedom as judges denied him bail.

The radical Islamist, who has become a thorn in the Government’s side, said recently that he would voluntarily return to Jordan if a new law banning the use of evidence procured through torture is passed.

The 52-year-old remains at Belmarsh prison, having breached his bail conditions. The Special Immigration Appeals Commission heard yesterday that jihadist material was found on a USB stick seized at his home.

Handing down his ruling yesterday, Mr Justice Irwin said: “We regard these breaches as serious. It was the appellant’s obligation to understand the conditions of bail and ensure they were adhered to.”

Abu Qatada’s lawyer Daniel Friedman QC told the hearing that his client was a “proud and dignified man” who had been held in custody for too long. Mr Friedman said that Abu Qatada “has been deprived of his liberty more than any other non-convicted person in British history”.

Robin Tam QC, who represents the Home Office, said £5,000 in cash had also found during the search of Abu Qatada’s property – although this was not a breach of his bail conditions. Mr Tam said Siac itself had once described Abu Qatada, also known as Omar Othman, as a “truly dangerous individual” and added there was “no reason to believe that’s no longer true”.

He revealed that the USB stick had been found in Abu Qatada’s older son’s room and contained schoolwork – but also “jihadist files” including references to al-Qa’ida.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss