Hamza 'could be extradited in 28 days'

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The Independent Online

The extradition of the extremist Islamic cleric Abu Hamza to the United States on a series of terrorism charges has been authorised by Jacqui Smith, the Home Secretary.

The Egyptian-born preacher, who ran the Finsbury Park mosque in north London, is serving a seven-year prison sentence in Britain for inciting murder and racial hatred, possessing "threatening, abusive or insulting recordings" and for having a document useful to terrorists.

Abu Hamza, 49, is sought by the US authorities on 11 charges, including providing support to al-Qa'ida and involvement in a hostage-taking plot in Yemen. He could be extradited within 28 days. American officials said he will not face the death penalty or be sent to Guantanamo Bay, but the charges carry a potential jail sentence of 100 years.

The cleric has 14 days to appeal against extradition.