Doctor “cleared” of terror plot wins fight to stay in UK
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The Government has dropped its attempts to deport Mohammed Asha
A doctor cleared of the London and Glasgow car bomb plots has won his fight to stay in Britain.
Despite saying he was a risk to national security, the Government is no longer seeking to deport Jordanian neurologist Mohammed Asha.
The Home Office had maintained that despite being cleared at trial, he was not welcome in the UK and would not be allowed to remain here.
Last night Dr Asha said he wanted to resume his career in the NHS.
Since he was cleared he has continued to study and is understood to have qualified as a surgeon. Last month he attained full registration as a doctor in Britain after rigorous General Medical Council exams.
Ministers had been prepared for a difficult battle to deport the 28-year-old to Jordan, where his wife and young son live.
The case against him was due to be heard by the Special Immigration Appeals Commission in October, but yesterday it was withdrawn.
Dr Asha was tried last year alongside British-born Iraqi doctor Bilal Abdulla, who was jailed for at least 32 years for plotting to murder hundreds of civilians in terrorist car bomb attacks on London and Glasgow.
The prosecution alleged Dr Asha was the financier and supporter of the Glasgow airport terror cell.
The Jeep used by Bilal Abdulla and Kafeel Ahmed in the attack on Glasgow Airport
He admitted knowing Abdulla and Indian engineering student Kafeel Ahmed, 28, who died from burns sustained during the 2007 Glasgow attack, but he claimed they betrayed him.
Jailed: Bilal Abdulla, who was given money by Dr Asha
The court heard that Dr Asha had given money to both Abdulla and Ahmed, and extremist material was found on the doctor’s laptop. But he said he did not know the Â£1,300 he lent to Abdulla was to rent and buy cars and bomb-making equipment.
When Abdulla was convicted of conspiracy to cause explosions and conspiracy to murder, and Dr Asha was cleared, the two men embraced in the dock.
Last night Dr Asha was said to be happy at the decision to drop the battle to deport him. He hopes to return to NHS employment if his bid to regain a ‘highly-skilled’ working visa is successful.
His solicitor, Tayab Ali, said: ‘Mohammed Asha always said he was innocent and was not a threat to national security.
Now, finally, he has been entirely vindicated. He hopes now that he can go back to his family life, and work as an NHS doctor.
‘His family went back to Jordan shortly after his arrest as they couldn’t maintain themselves here. Once he has cleared his visa they will be seeking to come here again.’
At the time of his arrest Dr Asha worked for the University Hospital of North Staffordshire in Stoke-on-Trent.