An Unnecessary Tragedy

Breaking News

A response to the recent tragedy.

It is with great sadness that we learn the details behind the horrific terror attack that occurred a few hours ago on London Bridge.

Not only do we as a nation have to contend with the tragic death of two innocents, with more injured, some maybe critically, but to find out that this was an avoidable incident must only raise questions as to why our supposed decision-makers treat our lives and safety in such a cavalier manner.

Usman Khan was convicted and sentenced to an indeterminate term, revised on appeal to 16 years, back in 2012-13 for his role in a 2010 plot to blow up the London Stock Exchange. Including time on remand, he served only half of this, the standard tariff.

Khan's release was predicated on the policy that those who no longer pose a threat should be released. The Parole Board claims it played no role; others appear to have abdicated responsibility. Who allowed this dangerous, violent criminal back onto the streets?

Government policy to encourage the release of prisoners, even the most depraved, “automatically” after serving merely half of their term is wrong on so many levels. It is an insult to the idea of criminal justice, the law. As we have now sadly witnessed, it creates situations where innocent people are brutally murdered.

Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner, Neil Basu, said: "He was released from prison in December 2018 on licence and, clearly, a key line of enquiry now is to establish how he came to carry out this attack".

The Parole Board issued a statement saying Khan "appears to have been released automatically on licence (as required by law)".

The two statements show us the root of this problem. The law is faulty, and the Metropolitan Police, led by Cressida Dick, refuse to criticise it. What the British public knows is that if you are guilty of a crime, you should serve your sentence. The idea that a 16-year-sentence should be served in just eight makes no sense. Who is this policy helping? Not the two people who were so tragically robbed of their lives. Not the three people suffering from injuries resulting from this attack. And certainly not the public, who must live in fear that they or their family will fall victim to a violent assault by an Islamic fundamentalist (as the courts in 2012-13 found Khan and his gang to be) that could so easily have been avoided.

We, as a nation, have been let down by those tasked with protecting us. If they refuse to deal with this situation, and the many others that will result from this disastrous policy, then they must step aside to make way for those who will.
Our lives are not mere pieces in a political puzzle to be traded and shaped to suit the whims of those in power.

Freddy Vachha,

UKIP National Campaign Manager