This article contains editorial content by a staff writer for Law Enforcement Today
LONDON – The United Kingdom is a good two decades ahead of the United States in its rabbit hole of human rights laws. That is to say, it enacted laws that seem to put criminals’ rights above those of their victims, law enforcement and society in general.
It is the kind of legislation that allows a solicitor to successfully argue against imprisoning a female criminal, for instance, because to do so would keep her away from her children. Never mind that she may have ruined peoples’ lives and broken the trust a community has in its members. Not to mention, if you can do the crime, be prepared to do the time.
Is it time to stop shouting at prisoners?
Former Prison Governor Vanessa Frake-Harris says there are times when you 'have to raise your voice' in prison due to it being noisy.
She adds that prison officers are taught to teach prisoners with respect. pic.twitter.com/nU1mdTpfWb
— Good Morning Britain (@GMB) May 31, 2022
So it should be no surprise, though no less irritating, that one of Britain’s major morning news shows would entertain the idea that prison guards shouldn’t shout at prisoners because it hurts their feelings. (Insert eyeroll here.)
More specifically, says former gang member Nequela Whittaker, shouting at prisoners is against their human rights and doesn’t help them rehabilitate.
She made the claim during a debate with Vanesa Frank-Harris, a former prison warden, on Good Morning Britain on Tuesday.
Unfortunately, Frank-Harris, who defended the need to shout, took the easy way out of the debate by saying prisons are noisy and guards must yell to be heard.
What she should have said is prisoners are in prison and not on holiday on the Costa del Sol and they are not the ones calling the shots. Frank-Harris said:
“In 30 years I didn’t go to work once thinking I was going to shout at people.”
She explained that because prison is a naturally loud environment, prison officers do have to yell to be heard. She said:
“Prison by its very nature is a noisy place, you have got keys swinging and doors banging on a wing [with] 300 prisoners who don’t want to be there, milling around and shouting about.
“And there are times where you have to call prisoners down to go for visits or gym or whatever.”
She noted that prison staff do not discipline inmates by shouting at them, and are, in fact, trained to treat people with respect.
Whittaker said there is a difference between raising one’s voice to be heard and shouting, which is “oppressing” that person. She said:
“You’re repressing someone’s voice to the point where they are not feeling able to have that trust within the prison system.
“How the message is being conducted, when that person is shouting, screeching, putting them down, demonizing them, it’s not reform, So in my eyes it’s not the best practice for that prison officer to get the best outcome out of that person.”
Whittaker said she believes it is never appropriate to shout at a prisoner because that person is already going through trauma and looking for someone in whom to confide.
She made the point that if prisoners can’t confide in the officers, they can’t ask them to assist in their reform.
The debate comes after the release of an official report into the jail HMP Winchester that condemned guards, called officers, for shouting at offenders and for referring to them by their surnames. It said the practices failed to show a requisite respect for prisoners.
‘Respec the prisoners’ says a former prisoner and gang member 😂🤣. How about do your time quietly, get out, reform and earn some respect?!?
— Paul Mcmillan 🌸 (@PaulMacca76) May 31, 2022
Watchdog agency HM Inspectorate of Prisons conducted the study. Chief Inspector of Prisons Charlie Taylor said:
“Staff would unnecessarily yell ‘Exercise’ and other orders at the top of their voices when in the vicinity of those they were addressing.
“Not only was this unnecessary, but it also demonstrated a lack of insight into the impact of shouting on those who had suffered trauma in the past.”
As the British are fond of saying: They have lost the plot. The U.K. criminal justice system does not exist to cater to criminals, it exists to keep society safe from criminals, or it should. But it now seems the inmates are running the prisons.
The report added that it was “expected” that prisoners be “treated with respect by staff throughout their time in custody.” No one is suggesting that prisoners be subjected to cruelty but why give them the upper hand in interactions by unnecessarily criticizing unremarkable methods?
Incidentally, despite the watchdog’s criticisms, the majority of the inmates polled at HMP Winchester – 57% – believed prison staff did treat them respectfully.
GMB viewers weren’t impressed with Whittaker’s stand and voiced their thoughts on social media. One person said:
“Poor prisoners already going through a trauma. Already being punished by having a warm room, three meals a day. More than lots of people. We need to make prisons a deterrent and make them as uncomfortable as possible.”
Another viewer said:
“It’s ok for prisoners to shout torture ,abuse (sic) and even kill their victims but don’t like it when they are shouted at.”
Terrorist in prison hides knife, fakes suicide attempt then jumps guards who respond to help
February 25, 2020
Winchester, England – A prison in England is now becoming a breeding ground for the radicalization of the inmate population, and guards working in the prison are paying the price as a result.
News recently broke of what was described as a “copycat jihadist attack” launched at prison guards within the HMP Winchester facility, and it’s apparently becoming a trend all too familiar there.
Xeneral Imiuru, formerly known as Xeneral Webster, was convicted of manslaughter back in 2018 for the death of 47-year-old Joanne Rand. Imiuru had attempted to rob a man of his bike by menacingly threatening him with a bottle of industrial-strength, highly corrosive sulfuric acid.
The intended victim smacked the bottle away from him, causing the contents to spill on the face of Rand – leading her to eventually die of sepsis.
UK: Xeneral Imiuru, who is in prison for killing a woman in an acid attack, launched a jihadist attack in his cell by pretending to have been injured through a suicide attempt. He used a weapon on the responding officers who tried to help him. https://t.co/hpKNaFPfFe
— Andy Ngô 🏳️🌈 (@MrAndyNgo) February 19, 2020
Currently Imiuru is sitting inside of the HMP Winchester prison facility. While he didn’t intend the death of Rand years ago, he’s certainly flaunting murderous intent today.
Recently inside the confines of the prison, Imiuru developed a plan to gather the attention of prison guards making their rounds. He reportedly faked a suicide attempt to get prison employees to respond and enter his cell.
— CyberChick (@warriors_mom) February 23, 2020
When the guards went to examine Imiuru’s perceived lifeless body, he jumped to his feet with a makeshift knife attached to his wrist. Fortunately the guards who responded were able to thwart the attempt on their lives without any reported injuries.
Ian Acheson, a former prison governor helped lead the 2016 review of extremism in prisons, commented on the recent attack by Imiuru taking place in the British prison:
“It’s not clear yet what the motive is but the features of this attack in what ought to be the most secure environment in any prison suggest audacity and careful pre-meditation at the least. The attack could well have been inspired by recent violent extremism inside and outside the prison walls.”
Apparently, these jihadist-inspired attacks have been taking place inside the British prison system more frequently than one might think.
Brusthom Ziamani was sentenced to 22 years in prison back in 2015, after plotting to decapitate a British soldier. Unlike Imiuru, Ziamani was already well-radicalized before setting foot into a prison.
Earlier this year, Ziamani and another inmate staged an attack against prison staff using makeshift weapons, slashing and stabbing a number of employees. While doing so, Ziamani and his accomplice were adorned with fake bomb belts and screaming “Allahu Akbar!”
UK Counter Terrorism Police Do NOT Understand ISLAM!
Convicted Jihadi, Brusthom Ziamani, stabbed a prison officer as he shouted 'Allahu Akbar'
— Amy Mek (@AmyMek) January 12, 2020
One incident that led to Ziamani’s case and radicalization was his obsession with the horrific murder of Lee Rigby in 2013.
For those unfamiliar with the incident, Rigby, a British soldier, was hacked to pieces in broad daylight by a duo of radicals who urged people on the street to film them as they committed the murder.
Other inmates stated that Ziamani had previously attempted to organize a coup against the prison system. He also allegedly would hold Sharia courts within his prison, commanding that detractors of Sharia law be beaten for their violations.
This also happens to be the same prison where Usman Khan had stayed prior to his release.
Who was Khan? Khan was already a convicted terrorist when he first went to prison, but was released on parole. After he was paroled, Khan would eventually receive the moniker of the “London Bridge Killer”, where he killed two people and wounded three others in November of 2019.
Khan had previously spent only six years inside of the prison, which serves as a bastion for radical Muslims He was jailed for a plot to bomb the London Stock Exchange while at the same time trying to establish a terrorist training camp.
Something is terribly wrong inside the walls of the prisons in England. Unfortunately, when these people get released, this will put the public at tremendous risk.
If this sounds familiar, we reported on an incident only a few weeks ago. Here’s a reminder:
Police say a suspected terrorist is dead after going on a mass-stabbing rampage in London early Sunday, according to reports from Newsweek.
Police quickly took to social media to alert local citizens of the danger.
“A man has been shot by armed officers in #Streatham. At this stage it is believed a number of people have been stabbed,” the police posted on Twitter. “The circumstances are being assessed; the incident has been declared as terrorist-related.”
Witness accounts from social media claimed that they heard three gunshots in the early afternoon, around 2 p.m. U.K. time.
#INCIDENT A man has been shot by armed officers in #Streatham. At this stage it is believed a number of people have been stabbed. The circumstances are being assessed; the incident has been declared as terrorist-related. Please follow @metpoliceuk for updates
— Metropolitan Police (@metpoliceuk) February 2, 2020
More reports claimed that multiple victims had been stabbed. One witness said that they waited with an injured person for more than 30 minutes while awaiting medical attention.
“I had to stay with someone who’d just been #stabbed in #Streatham for 30 minutes before a single ambulance arrived. I just hope he made it,” one man wrote on Twitter.
Others could only speculate as to what was going on.
“Something major happening in Streatham High Road. Armed police and roads closed off,” said another.
Police are urging people to keep away from the location of the attacks while they continue to investigate.
“Terrorists seek to divide us and to destroy our way of life,” Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said in a statement. “Here in London we will never let them succeed.”
There are limited details as to what fully transpired, but police are expected to give briefing shortly. Law Enforcement Today will continue to bring you up to date information as it is released to the public.
This is the second knife-wielding terror suspect to be neutralized by police in the last two months.
In December, London saw a horrific knife attack on the London Bridge by a confirmed jihadist terrorist. As a result, two individuals were killed and several more were critically injured-the attacker shot and killed by police.
This could have been completely avoidable, had the terrorist not been released from prison.
No, it wasn’t a mix up, while Usman Khan slated to never be released unless he was somehow deemed to no longer be a terroristic threat- he was released on a license in December of 2018. Khan claimed he was reformed.
Now reports are coming out that Khan is one of six who have been released under a similar program.
And all of those individuals are connected to Khan when the group of nine terrorists were arrested in the midst of a plot to attack the London Stock Exchange and kill Boris Johnson in 2010.
According to Daily Mail.com:
“Three of the nine – Khan, Mohammad Shahjahan and Nazam Hussein – were initially handed indefinite prison terms, but the trio won an appeal in 2013 which changed them to fixed sentences.
Allowing their appeal, former press inquiry chair Lord Justice Leveson found they had been ‘wrongly characterized’ as more dangerous than the others.”
Shah Mohammed Rahman, Omar Sharif Latif, Gurukanth Desai and Abdul Malik Miah have all been released from prison under similar terms as Khan.
Currently the documentation for when and where these individuals were released from prison has been a bit lacking.
According to sources however, when all nine men were sentenced, the time they had served while awaiting trial was considered for their sentence terms.
As reported by The Daily Mail:
“At the trial in 2012, Woolwich Crown Court heard how the nine jihadists had plotted an al-Qaeda-style attack to detonate a bomb at the London Stock Exchange.
In addition, a hand-written target list found at one of the plotters’ homes also included the names and addresses of the Dean of St Paul’s Cathedral, Boris Johnson who was then Mayor of London, two rabbis, and the US Embassy in London.”
Sources report that the London based sleeper cell of terrorists was brought down when than 19-year-old Khan was recorded in his home creating plans to mask an al-Qaeda type training camp as a religious school.
The Daily Mail also reported that during the undercover police operation recordings in the home included:
“…some London and Cardiff-based members of the group discussed launching a ‘Mumbai-style’ atrocity, while the Stoke extremists talked about setting off pipe bombs in the toilets of two pubs in their home town.”
The Guardian reported that:
“A 2013 report indicated, “Khan was one of three men from Stoke who had travelled to Pakistan’s federally administered tribal areas (Fata) and planned to fund, construct and take part in a terrorist training camp in Kashmir, with a view to carrying out terrorist acts in the future.
They were part of a group that had copies of the al-Qaida English-language extremist magazine Inspire and had considered putting letter bombs in the post.”
In February 2012 when the sentences came down for the group, the judge in the case Mr Justice Wilkie, stated about the group and their plans that:
“…the plot was a ‘serious, long-term venture in terrorism’ that could also have resulted in atrocities in Britain.”
Wilkie was also noted as saying Khan was one of the most extreme of the group that had been arrested.
So why were any of these individuals allowed to walk free outside of prison walls?
According to The Guardian:
“Khan appealed against the decision in 2013 before Lord Justice Leveson, sitting with Mr Justice Mitting and Mr Justice Sweeney. It was decided that his sentence would go from 18 to 16 years, along with five-year extended license periods.”
This sentence would automatically allow Khan release after serving just 8 years of his term. This was also that case for Khan’s co-conspirators.
The Daily Mail explains that:
“Khan was automatically set free thanks to the Criminal Justice Act – introduced by Labour in 2005 – which releases prisoners halfway through their term, with the rest of their sentence under license.”
With the release of Khan, and the recent horrific attack he unleashed on the London Bridge, those in the British judicial system are trying to point fingers in every direction but their own.
Lord Justice Leveson has stated that it was the Parole Board that ultimately allowed for the release of Khan. However, the Parole Board released the statement which said they:
“…played no part at all in Khan’s release as he was freed automatically, suggesting a failure at some point in the Justice System, and ultimately from the Government, to review Khan’s case.”
Others have also pointed to Former Tory minister David Gauke who was the justice secretary when Khan was released in 2018.
The Criminal Justice Act included the “Sentences of Imprisonment for Public Protection (IPPs) were introduced in 2005 and given to violent or sexual offenders. The policy was introduced by Labour’s David Blunkett and was targeted at criminals who did not warrant a life sentence but posed a serious risk to the public,” as explained by the Daily Mail.
These sentences were removed in 2012 under a new conservative government. Although they removed these sentences, it is reported that the government promised they would protect citizens from the individuals that were given these IPPs terms.
The attack on the London Bridge shows just how effective those promises were.
Following the attack last week Labour’s Yvette Cooper when on the attack of the government writing on Twitter:
‘Usman Khan was sentenced for serious terror offence in Feb 2012. Thought to be so dangerous by judge he was given IPP sentence to prevent release if still serious threat. ‘Instead he was released 6 yrs later without Parole Board assessment. How could this be allowed to happen?’”
As a response to Cooper’s tweet current Home Secretary Priti Patel responded with tweets of her own stating:
“Because legislation brought in by your government in 2008 meant that dangerous terrorists had to automatically be released after half of their jail term. Conservatives changed the law in 2012 to end your automatic release policy but Khan was convicted before this.’”
Due to the changes in the law, many questions remain. Besides those that Khan was originally arrested and convicted with that have also been released, how many more terrorists have been released under this law change?
Who is tracking these individuals? Where are they now? And given the results of the London Bridge attack, will others follow close behind?
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