[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Friday, 26 October 2007, 12:38 GMT 13:38 UK
Explosives manual teenager jailed
Abdul Muneem Patel
Abdul Muneem Patel: Jailed over explosives manual
A teenager has been jailed after an Old Bailey jury found him guilty of having a terrorism-related explosives manual.

Abdul Patel, 18, of east London, was said in court to be "ready, willing and able" to help terrorists.

Judge Peter Rook sentenced him to six months in a Young Offenders Institution after rejecting mitigation for a suspended sentence.

The judge said Patel was guilty of possessing the document - but was not a "radicalised or politicised Islamist".

In September, a jury at the Old Bailey found Patel guilty of one charge of possessing a document likely to be useful for terrorism and not guilty of a second charge of possessing a document for an act of terrorism.

The teenager was 17 when he was arrested at his wife's family home in August 2006.

Under his bed police found what prosecutors said was an explosives manual detailing the construction of home-made bombs.

The manual was originally written for US experts and contained diagrams and drawings for improvised explosive devices.

It included bomb recipes involving ordinary chemicals and products, such as fertiliser. The box also included a book on the Taleban, a taped speech by Osama bin Laden and letters from people going to fight in Bosnia.

In his defence, Patel denied that he was radicalised. He told the court the manual was not his, but had been left with him by another man known to his father.

He had asked the man to take the boxes back. His father, who lives in South Africa, was said to be a veteran of the Afghan war against the Soviet Union, although Patel himself said he was not sure.

Box sealed

Sentencing Patel, Judge Rook said that the jury had cleared the teenager on the more serious charge - but that he had "no reasonable excuse" for possessing documents that were "obviously likely to be useful to a terrorist".

"You were looking after that book for someone older than you who you did not know well other than he had been an associate of your father," said the judge.

"It may be because of that man's association with your father that you naively agreed to look after that manual."

He said Patel had sealed the box but would have known that the title of the explosives manual was clear in large letters.

"It was clearly of current utility, even though it was published in 1991," said Judge Rook.

"It was dangerous if it had fallen into the wrong hands. I'm not prepared to say that you are a radicalised or politicised Islamist."

For Patel, Michael Mansfield QC argued that the teenager should not be jailed because of both his age and the nature of the offence.

But Judge Rook said that there had to be a deterrence factor in the case and that people needed to be alert to the dangers of possessing such material.

Patel was told he would serve three months of his sentence before being released and that the sentence took into account a time spent on remand prior to his trial.

The judge had initially sentenced Patel to eight months but reduced it after a defence submission based on youth sentencing law.





FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific