Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

BAKRI'S HEART SURGERY ON NHS; EXCLUSIVE: As Standard Tracks Him Down to Lebanon Home: Taxpayers to Pay for Op at London Hospital: He Is Still Receiving [Pounds Sterling]42 a Week in Benefits

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

BAKRI'S HEART SURGERY ON NHS; EXCLUSIVE: As Standard Tracks Him Down to Lebanon Home: Taxpayers to Pay for Op at London Hospital: He Is Still Receiving [Pounds Sterling]42 a Week in Benefits

Article excerpt

Byline: ROBERT MENDICK

EXTREMIST cleric Omar Bakri Mohammed is returning to Britain for heart surgery on the NHS.

Bakri, 46, who flew to Beirut at the weekend, pledged yesterday to come back in a month. Today the Evening Standard can reveal he is due to have an operation costing thousands of pounds at a London hospital.

He has told the Standard he has a problem with high blood pressure and needs surgery to widen an artery - and he plans to return to Britain for an operation that would cost him [pounds sterling]7,500 if done privately.

It is also revealed today that he can continue claiming disability living allowance while in Lebanon. He is entitled to the benefit for a leg injury he sustained as a child - and he can claim for up to six months while living abroad, with the [pounds sterling]42.30a-week benefit paid into his bank account.

The unemployed cleric - who has spent 19 years on benefits - is entitled to the handout, which is available to permanent UK residents regardless of nationality.

His wife and seven children will go on receiving more than [pounds sterling]300 a week in benefits. Bakri also received a [pounds sterling]30,000 people carrier this year, which was paid for by the state.

The Standard today tracked down his summer holiday home in a rundown suburb of the Lebanese capital.

Bakri, who is said to have described the 7 July bombers as the "Fantastic Four", has been staying in the ground floor and basement-level apartment of a dilapidated four-storey block overlooking scrubland.

The revelations will intensify the row over what to do with him on his return. The Government is in disarray after the Lord Chancellor, Lord Falconer, ridiculed plans to consider charges of treason against him.

Now authorities are examining the possibility of charging him with incitement to murder. The Syrian-born radical was granted indefinite leave to remain in the UK in the Eighties. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.