Nigel Farage says London Bridge terrorist Usman Khan should never have been released from jail because he ‘had the jihadi virus’ as party leaders hold new election debate
- Mr Farage said those convicted of plotting mass murder should never be freed
- He said in the debate this was unless it was clear they did not have ‘jihadi virus’
- ‘Nobody apologises for the fact liberal elite having given us a ridiculous system’
- Usman Khan had been released from prison last December after caged in 2012
Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage has blamed ‘political correctness’ for the release from prison of Usman Khan, who went on commit the London Bridge terror attack.
In the ITV seven-way election debate, Mr Farage said people convicted of plotting mass murder should never be released from prison unless it was clear they did not have the ‘jihadi virus’.
‘Nobody apologises for the fact that the liberal elite have given us a ridiculous sentencing system,’ he said.
‘I don’t care if you were in prison for six years or 12 years. If you have committed mass murder or planned to commit mass murder you are not just an ordinary criminal you have got the virus of jihadi-ism.
‘I think these people should never ever be let out prison unless we are absolutely convinced they do not have the jihadi virus. But political correctness stops us from doing that.’
The Brexit Party leader said whether the convicted terrorist was serving ‘six years or eight years he should never have been let out’
Khan had been released from prison last December despite being caged for terror offences in 2012.
Representing the Tories in the debate, Treasury Chief Secretary Rishi Sunak said Khan had been released as result of changes brought in by the Last Labour government.
‘He was released due to a law passed in 2008 under the last Labour government where people were released automatically halfway through their sentence.’ he said.
‘We changed that law in 2012 and if he had been sentenced under out rules he would still be in jail.’
Mr Farage (left) said: ‘I don’t care if you were in prison for six years or 12 years. If you have committed mass murder or planned to commit mass murder you are not just an ordinary criminal you have got the virus of jihadi-ism.’ Representing the Tories in the debate, Treasury Chief Secretary Rishi Sunak said Usman Khan had been released as result of changes brought in by the Last Labour government
For Labour, shadow justice secretary Richard Burgon said it was ‘not true’ that the only option at the time was automatic release of Khan halfway of through his sentence.
‘People don’t want history lessons after this terrorist atrocity. What people want is to put victims first and put keeping communities safe first,’ he said.
Today the second victim of the London Bridge terror attack was named as another young Cambridge University graduate.
Saskia Jones, 23, of Stratford-upon-Avon, died alongside Jack Merritt, 25, of Cottenham, Cambridgeshire, after Usman Khan, 28, went on a deadly knife frenzy in London on Friday.
Saskia Jones, 23, (pictured) of Stratford-upon-Avon, died alongside Jack Merritt, 25, of Cottenham, Cambridgeshire, after Usman Khan went on a stabbing frenzy in London on Friday
Both graduates were taking part in a prisoner rehabilitation conference that was trying to rehabilitate the likes of the terrorist who went on to kill them. Miss Jones was working as a volunteer and Mr Merritt as a coordinator.
The 23-year-old’s family paid tribute to her ‘funny, kind, positive influence’, saying she was ‘intent on living life to the full’.
Khan was on licence and wearing an electronic monitoring tag when he attended the conference organised by Cambridge University scheme Learning Together at Fishmongers’ Hall near London Bridge.
He was shot dead by police after members of the public bravely rushed to disarm him, one with a narwhal tusk taken from the venue.
The attack left three other people injured, one of whom was a member of staff, the university’s vice-chancellor Stephen Toope has said.
Jack Merritt (left), 25, of Cottenham, Cambridge, was the first victim to be named. He died after being stabbed by Usman Khan (right)