Quite bloody right too

The first attempt to seize the home of a convicted terrorist using new laws has failed, after a judge ruled it would be unfair to make his family homeless.

The Crown Prosecution Service applied for the forfeiture of a house where extremist Munir Farooqi, 56, attempted to recruit jihadist fighters to kill British soldiers in Afghanistan.

They used new powers under Section 23A of the Terrorism Act 2000 to apply for the seizure of Farooqi’s £200,000 home in the Longsight area of Manchester.

But in a landmark ruling yesterday at the High Court in Manchester, senior law lord Sir Richard Henriques QC, rejected the application on the grounds it would make Farooqi’s “wholly innocent” family homeless.

Punishment is for those found guilty of a crime in a trial. And only for those.

31 comments on “Quite bloody right too

  1. Did he buy the house from proceeds of criminal activity?

    No, he just held recruitment meetings there.

    But they tried under s23A(1) Terrorism Act 2000 – property used for terrorist purposes, rather than Part 2 Proceeds of Crime Act.

    Just for clarity, I agree with the result.

  2. Playing Devil’s advocate, why not seize the house and then rent it back to his family for a peppercorn rent? Nobody is made homeless, but the terrorist loses ownership.

    Not that I’m in favour of them doing so. Punishments should fit the crime, and only the proceeds of crime should be seizable. But it seems like a legally feasible solution.

  3. I disagree with Tim here. Taking ownership of the property away from the terrorist is not the same thing as making his family homeless. Other arrangements can be made for the family.

    This is a case of the clear and specific intention of a law made by Parliament being cast aside by activist judiciary.

    If we keep rewarding Muslim terrorists for hiding behind women and children, they’ll keep doing it.

  4. Punishment is for those found guilty of a crime in a trial. And only for those.

    Sorry but that would include home-owning terrorists wouldn’t it? You know, the sort of people who are presently serving four life terms for conspiring to kill British soldiers?

    Was he convicted? Yes he was. Does he now owe the British government costs? Yes he does. Does the law say that the government has the right to seize his house? Yes it does.

    We have this thing called the rule of law. The law says he is guilty. The law says he owes the British government, that is, us, half a million quid. The law is an ass and it is wrong to seize people’s houses but that is the law.

    But some f**k toy of a judge decides he knows better. He has decided that some little moppet might cry if the law is enforced. So he has decided to over-turn the will of the Parliament and hence the people. Their Human Rights and all that.

    Is there any *legal* justification for what he has done? None. He just doesn’t want to be a meanie.

    But, hey, if we’re going down this path, we can let every single thug and scum bucket out of prison because, you know, it might cause their daughters to cry or their Baby Mommas to be lonely or something.

    Why do we need laws when we have the exquisite sensitivity of unelected and utterly unaccountable judges to decide what is right and wrong?

  5. NiV – “Playing Devil’s advocate, why not seize the house and then rent it back to his family for a peppercorn rent? Nobody is made homeless, but the terrorist loses ownership.”

    That is not playing Devil’s Advocate. Why don’t we seize the house, take his children into Care, allow some nice Jewish families in Golders Green to adopt them and deport any adults back to whatever sh!thole they came from in the first place?

    That is how you play Devil’s Advocate.

    There are plenty of much better solutions to homeless little poppets.

    “Punishments should fit the crime”

    Punishments should fit the crime? So you are in favour of placing this unflushable turd next to some diesel fuel mixed with fertilizer and blowing him into lots of small bits all over the countryside?

    Radical. But it could work. Might even be painless.

  6. @”Was he convicted? Yes he was. Does he now owe the British government costs? Yes he does. Does the law say that the government has the right to seize his house? Yes it does.

    We have this thing called the rule of law. The law says he is guilty. The law says he owes the British government, that is, us, half a million quid. The law is an ass and it is wrong to seize people’s houses but that is the law.”
    I agree, he was guilty and should pay the costs.

  7. If we take the view that only the guilty should be punished, then should my employer be unable to sack me? After all it would hurt my son as much as me.

  8. But some f**k toy of a judge decides he knows better. He has decided that some little moppet might cry if the law is enforced. So he has decided to over-turn the will of the Parliament and hence the people.

    The will of Parliament is that the CPS may apply to a court for a forfeiture order and the court decides whether to grant the order. The will of Parliament isn’t that the court must always grant the order.

    Their Human Rights and all that.

    Explaining his decision, Sir Richard said: “It should not be cited as a case of the human rights legislation protecting a terrorist’s family. It is a case where judicial discretion is afforded to ensure that wholly innocent citizens are not adversely affected by a forfeiture order, depriving them of their home.
    “I am satisfied that if I were to make the order, I would run the risk of these wholly innocent adults and children becoming homeless.”

  9. ukliberty – “The will of Parliament is that the CPS may apply to a court for a forfeiture order and the court decides whether to grant the order. The will of Parliament isn’t that the court must always grant the order.”

    Indeed. But the will of the Parliament spells out clearly what the Court is to consider in making an order for a forfeiture:

    23B (2)In considering whether to make an order under section 23 or 23A in respect of any property, a court shall have regard to—

    (a)the value of the property, and

    (b)the likely financial and other effects on the convicted person of the making of the order (taken together with any other order that the court contemplates making).

    Nowhere do I see making little poppets cry under the niqaabs a reason laid out by Parliament for not seizing the house. Nowhere do I see permission given to the Court to consider the feelings of said little munchkins.

    “Explaining his decision, Sir Richard said: “It should not be cited as a case of the human rights legislation protecting a terrorist’s family.”

    Sure. Some of his best friends are probably Black too. What else is he going to say? There are other solutions to these little moppets being homeless. We have any number of childless Jewish families who would love to adopt.

  10. Agree with Tim again.

    And in the more general case, these kinds of seizure laws are shameful. If criminals have assets, there is an argument for civil cases to gain restitutional compensation for the victims from them, but allowing the State to just seize stuff is always and everywhere a Bad Thing.

    Few have done more to destroy our tradition of a decent legal system than the hang’em’flog’ems who ironically call themselves conservative.

  11. I also find the comments in this thread about forcible adoption into Jewish families (what?!) genuinely disturbing, and I’m a little baffled as to why such suggestions would be made. Why Jews?

  12. Ian B – “And in the more general case, these kinds of seizure laws are shameful. … allowing the State to just seize stuff is always and everywhere a Bad Thing.”

    I agree without hesitation. But that is not the issue. We have the rule of law. The law says the house can be seized. The law allows a few grounds to make a judgement on whether to seize or not. But this judge has just decided all by himself to ignore the law and make up a spurious justification to force the rest of us not only to pay for the costs of soldiers being blown to bits, but also for the trials of the people who sent the people to blow them up.

    “Few have done more to destroy our tradition of a decent legal system than the hang’em’flog’ems who ironically call themselves conservative.”

    A legal system that repeatedly allows people out to rape and murder again is not decent. Nor is refusing to deter terrorists.

    Especially as there is a simple way to preserve our liberal traditions – stop allowing extremists and those likely to produce them into the country.

    Ian B – “I also find the comments in this thread about forcible adoption into Jewish families (what?!) genuinely disturbing, and I’m a little baffled as to why such suggestions would be made. Why Jews?”

    Because the purpose of the law is to deter. It will p!ss the terrorists off. If it disturbs you, I would be happy to see Hindu families adopt them too. Perhaps Gay Hindu families!

  13. The judge isn’t obliged to make the order.

    The law doesn’t say, “judge must make the order.”

    How many more ways do you need the same point to be made?

  14. ukliberty – “The judge isn’t obliged to make the order.”

    But he is told what he is allowed to consider in making the order. Crying poppets are not covered. The purpose of the rule of law is that judges make decisions based on the law. The law does not say he can make stuff up.

    And if it does, it is a bigger ass than I thought.

  15. While this wouldn’t be the main moral fault with chucking his family out, I can easily imagine that the “Other arrangements can be made for the family” ending up more expensive for the government in the long run, thus negating the financial point.

    Does someone actually make such a cost benefit analysis before such requests are filed?

  16. Property seizure and forfeiture is a growing government business in the U.S.

    Texas has become notorious for it.

  17. Perhaps it would be helpful to read 23B(1) before 23B(2):

    Before making an order under section 23 or 23A, a court must give an opportunity to be heard to any person, other than the convicted person, who claims to be the owner or otherwise interested in anything which can be forfeited under that section

    Both in ordinary language and I believe in law a person living in a house has an interest in it.

  18. Both in ordinary language and I believe in law a person living in a house has an interest in it.

    And, in this case, the house is registered in the names of his wife and (one of?) his daughter. Even the case for forfeiture didn’t state that he owned it, merely that, at the time of the offences, he “controlled it”.

  19. Genuine question here:

    “And, in this case, the house is registered in the names of his wife and (one of?) his daughter.”

    In Islamic culture and/or law can a woman own a property and deny her husband control of it?

    And for the avoidance of doubt I am not advocating using Islamic law and/or custom to deny her the right to continue to live there.

    I agree with Tim and if what SMFS says is correct that’s another reason for sting up the bastards.

  20. Playing devils advocate a bit more.

    So all murderers should have all their property taken off them by the state and sold to pay for their defence?

    Should fraudsters have their children taken off them by the state and put up for adoption?

  21. At the risk of being a bleeding heart, children are people too, and whatever arrangements are made on their behalf have to be done in their best interests, not to piss off some group they happen to belong to.

    Should we have awarded the children of Catholic Irish terrorists to Protestants, and vice versa?

    Also, women have full property rights in Islamic law. Interestingly, men are obligated to use their wealth to provide for their families (women and children) but men are not. This has led to some court cases in Tunisia where men with wealthier wives sued their wives, who the husbands claimed were spending their money purely on themselves. So yes, a woman can own a house.

  22. Punishment is for those found guilty of a crime in a trial. And only for those.

    I agree it should be, but unfortunately, it is certainly not the case in the UK. The most rancid example is the Arran Coghlan case. He was charged with murder three times and acquited and tried in connection to the supply of drugs and acquited, at which point Greater Manchester Police changed tactics and applied to SOCA to bring a seizure order for his home under the Proceeds of Crime Act, which was successful.

    Call me old fashioned, but in something that could meaningfully be described as a system of justice, I’d expect that a crime should have to be proven before the proceeds of crime could be seized.

  23. I think it is a mistake, and a serious one, to treat islamic terrorism as a crime. It is not. They are at war with us, and “terrorists” are the enemies soldiers. They are perfectly open and forthright in telling us they are at war, our refusal to admit that or to fight back with military force is our own moral failing. We have become cowards.

    His family are innocent in a civil court perhaps, but are they not giving aid and comfort to the enemy? Yes they are. They are providing material support to that enemy. They are entirely guilty of that offense and probably many more military offenses. That is the standard by which they should be judged. But we no longer have the spine to call evil what it is, and to treat it accordingly.

  24. When a hard working man loses his job and can’t pay the mortgage they don’t give a fuck about the family living there when they hand the house over to the bank, but if your a jihadi recruiter and owe the tax payer for your trial…..

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