The terrorists among us: Eight convicted offenders revealed to be living on our streets
Exclusive: Eight terrorist offenders have been released on licence and are living in our region – just like London Bridge attacker Usman Khan.
Eight people convicted of terror offences in the last five years have been released and are living in the West Midlands or Staffordshire.
London Bridge attacker Usman Khan was released on licence and living in Stafford when he killed two people and injured three more in November.
The Ministry of Justice today confirmed there are eight others in our region also on licence having been released from prison after being convicted of terror offences.
It only gave figures for those released since 2015, but there are likely to be many more who were released before that date.
MoJ officials stressed they had “acted quickly to review the supervision of all terrorists being managed by probation on licence, to ensure risk management plans in place are robust and fit for purpose”.
In most cases prisoners are released on licence after serving half their sentence and must adhere to certain conditions.
Management of convicted terrorists came into focus following the London Bridge attack when it emerged Khan was out on licence.
He was living in flats on Wolverhampton Road, near the Star and Garter pub, and it is believed he received regular visits from supervision officers. He was living under strict conditions, with monitoring and restrictions on internet access, but had been given permission to attend a conference in London, where he carried out his attack using a machete.
Khan, 28, was shot by armed police after he stabbed 25-year-old Jack Merritt and 23-year-old Saskia Jones to death during a prisoner rehabilitation event they were supporting on November 29.
Staffordshire Police is being investigated by the Office of Police Conduct as it had previously had contact with him.
The attack led to a debate about the work done to rehabilitate offenders who have become radicalised and carried out attacks. It has also led to a pledge by Prime Minister Boris Johnson for terrorists to serve longer sentences.
Dudley South MP Mike Wood said people who commit such serious offences should not be let out of prison early.
He said: “Anybody carrying out terrorism offences is a concern and I think people being let out of prison who are still a danger to the public is a particular concern.
"While good monitoring can help to reduce the risk it cannot eliminate it and that’s why it’s important dangerous criminals are in prison for all their sentence or until they no longer pose that risk.
“There is no way of protecting the public more than keeping dangerous criminals in prison.”
The MoJ revealed the number of convicted terrorists out on licence following a Freedom of Information request by the E&S. Those involved are currently living at addresses in either the Black Country, Staffordshire or Birmingham.
The MoJ said it was unable to provide more details on which area they live and the exact nature of their crimes due to data protection laws.