Terror plotters should get an automatic life sentence, terrorism expert argues

1 December 2019, 08:05

Dr Rakib Ehsan argued that he's sceptical of the idea that de-radicalisation programmes work - and it would be better to lock terror plotters up for life.

Speaking to Clive Bull, Dr Ehsan said: If we really keep the focus on how successful these programmes are, I have to be completely honest with you, Clive, I really do question their effectiveness.

I think this attack itself will cast further doubt on the effectiveness of the rehabilitative deradicalisation schemes."

The Research Fellow at the centre on radicalisation and terrorism at the Henry Jackson Society argued: "If you're found guilty of participating in plans to carry out terror plots, deadly terror plots on British soil, I think that should lead to an automatic life sentence.

Now, I think that may sound to a lot of people to be extremely harsh but I think when it comes to matters of this nature, we really need to prioritise public safety lots more and the safety of law-abiding majority in our country."

Terror plotters should get an automatic life sentences, argues terrorism expert
Terror plotters should get an automatic life sentences, argues terrorism expert. Picture: PA

Clive Bull asked about the distinction between terror plotters and those actually making terrorist acts.

Ehsan replied: "I always make the point that you have to be very realistic about the chances of rehabilitation and you have to see the nature of the crime.

"Now we're looking at Usman Khan, in particular, and we're talking about a man who was participating in plans to conduct terror plots on British soil. One of the targets being the London Stock Exchange.

"But he was also part of, well you could say, ambitious extremist plans o create and establish a terrorist military training facility all the way in Kashmir.

I think that just the thought that we could rehabilitate someone like that, I just feel that, to be quite honest, is completely bonkers."