Muslim leader is charged over 'kill the Jews' speech

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The Independent Online

A Muslim leader was charged with incitement to murder yesterday over allegations that he called for Jews and other infidels to be killed.

Abdullah el-Faisal, 38, from Stratford, east London, allegedly "encouraged others to murder persons unknown, contrary to section 4 of the Offences against the Persons Act 1861", Scotland Yard said.

He is being held at a central London police station and will appear at Bow Street magistrates' court today.

The Jamaican convert to Islam was arrested by officers from the anti-terrorist squad at a house in Ilford on Monday. He was born William Forest but is now known as Shaikh el-Faisal. He could face life imprisonment if convicted of the rarely used charge.

A Scotland Yard spokesman said: "He has been charged with, on or before February 18, 2002, within the jurisdiction of the Central Criminal Court, encouraging others to murder persons unknown contrary to Section 4 of the Offences against the Persons Act, 1861."

Concerns surrounding his activities were highlighted in the House of Commons after claims that he toured the country calling at meetings for the killing of Jews and other non-Muslims.

MPs called for action after allegations that Muslim bookshops were selling audio tapes of his inflammatory lectures. Mr el-Faisal studied religion for eight years in Saudi Arabia and has been a regular visitor to Britain since becoming the first Afro-Caribbean Muslim sheikh. Every Saturday he addresses followers at a religious centre in Whitechapel, east London.