On Tuesday March 11th 2008 Khaliq, 34, was sentenced to sixteen months in prison.
Prosecutor David Farrell QC told the court the al-Qaeda training manual included a declaration of Jihad, an interview with Osama bin Laden and information about weapons and how to deal with being interviewed by police.
Source: BBC News
A report in the Yorkshire Evening Post also described the contents of the manual, which differ slightly from the above:
Khalid Khaliq, 34, admitted owning a CD containing techniques on assassination, espionage, torture and interrogation after it was found at his home in Tempest Road, Beeston, Leeds.
The court heard how the CD had originally been in Iqra learning centre and bookshop on Bude Terrace, of which Khaliq was a trustee, but was moved from there to his home nearby after the attack. The court also heard how material on the disc had been downloaded from an American website set up by the US Ministry of Justice following a trial in 2002.
Judge James Stewart criticised the decision to put the material on the internet. He said: "It is like putting pornography on a website when a man is accused of possessing or creating it."
Although Khaliq was in possession of the disc he had never actually downloaded the information onto his home computer. Khaliq claimed he didn't know its content.
Source: Yorkshire Evening Post
Who moved the CD from the Iqra to Khaliq’s house? According to a Daily Mail report, Khaliq had stated that the disc "had been brought to his home by "others", whom he refused to identify."
With regard to the unidentified "others" to whom Khaliq refers, it is common knowledge that CD and DVD production, along with other IT issues at the Iqra bookshop, were undertaken not by a Muslim but instead by a former Hells Angel and " IT man", Martin Gilbertson (pictured left). In interviews given to the media Gilbertson speaks of "the amount of time I spent editing" what newspapers described as "horror DVDs" between 2001 and 2004. Gilbertson happened to be working alongside a former elite Special Boat Service "anti-terrorist" operative, one Martin 'Abdullah' McDaid (pictured right) who, for some reason, "asked for high-security encryption for their computer systems so it would be hard even for government agencies to access e-mails." Quite why an ex-SBS operative might want to hide data from government agencies has never been revealed.
The Mail also reported how the judge, James Stewart, had said it was "extraordinary" that the American Department of Justice had seen fit to publish the terrorist booklet on the internet:
Officials took the precaution of removing a section on "bomb-making" but they allowed chapters on espionage, assassinations, torture and interrogation to remain, Leeds Crown Court was told.
The manual had been published on the U.S. site as part of the transcript of a 2001 terror trial under a freedom of information policy.
Source: Daily Mail
The irony of material on the CD being uploaded to the internet by the US government under the terms of 'freedom of information' and then deemed illegal to possess in this country is self-evident. It is also worth noting that in a 2005 article by Duncan Campbell; ‘The Ricin Ring That Never Was’ describes how an attempt was made to introduce an ‘al-Qa’ida training manual’ into the case:
The most ironic twist was an attempt to introduce an "al-Qaida manual" into the case. The manual - called the Manual of the Afghan Jihad - had been found on a raid in Manchester in 2000. It was given to the FBI to produce in the 2001 New York trial for the first attack on the World Trade Centre. But it wasn't an al-Qaida manual. The name was invented by the US department of justice in 2001, and the contents were rushed on to the net to aid a presentation to the Senate by the then attorney general, John Ashcroft, supporting the US Patriot Act.
Source: The Guardian
Additionally, oddly enough, the CIA produced 'Freedom Fighter’s Manual', which includes instruction on economic sabotage, propaganda, extortion, bribery, blackmail, interrogation, torture, murder and political assassination and the CIA produced 'Human Resource Exploitation Training Manual' which teaches how to torture people are both perfectly legal to download, possess and distribute. Are we to conclude that manuals teaching torture, assassination and interrogation are only acceptable when produced by the US, and only 'useful to terrorists' when in the possession of Muslims?
Worth factoring into the consideration are the words of the Assistant Professor of Political Economy at the University of Washington, Guido Giacomo Preparata, who, on page 21 of his book Conjuring Hitler - How Britain and America made the Third Reich writes of "the recent lurking 'threat' of Bin Laden's Al-Qaeda - a true 'Godsend' for America's imperial establishment", further noting, "As known, the evanescent Bin Laden and his lieutenants are from the start an invention of the CIA."
Moreover, less than a month prior to this trial, on February 13th 2008, five young men were freed on appeal having been convicted of very similar charges, including charges of possessing information of a kind likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism. When quashing the convictions, the Lord Chief Justice said there was no proof of terrorist intent:
Lord Phillips said that while the men had downloaded such material, he doubted if there was evidence this was in relation to planning terrorist acts.
He said the prosecution had attempted to use the law for a purpose for which it was not intended.
Source: BBC News
Khalid Khaliq had come forward voluntarily to assist with the 7/7 investigation in Beeston in July 2005. This act of social responsibility is presumably how his property came to be searched in the first place. Despite his statement to the police that he did not support al-Qaida and was "shocked by the actions of the 7/7 bombers", despite character witnesses confirming that Khaliq was a "devoted, caring and loving" parent, who had given up work to be the sole carer of his children and did not advocate terrorism, the judge decided that Khaliq was a threat to society and merited a custodial sentence. Yet where is the evidence that Khaliq had the intent or means to commit an act of terrorism. Astonishingly, the judge even used the fact that Khaliq possessed a copy of the Terrorism Act as some kind of additional indictment against him - since when does the possession of government legislation equate to terrorist intent?
On February 13th 2008, Imran Khan; a lawyer for one of the freed Muslim students at the Court of Appeal said that the ruling would have a "significant impact":
He told BBC News: "Young Muslim men before this judgement could have been prosecuted simply for simply looking at any material on the basis that it might be connected in some way to terrorist purposes."
He said section 57 of the 2000 Terrorism Act had been written in such wide terms that "effectively, anybody could have been caught in it" but prosecutors would now have to prove such material was intended for terrorist purposes.
Source: BBC News
Evidently, the case has not had anything like the kind of impact that it should have; the conviction of Khalid Khaliq -- father and sole carer of three children, two girls aged 11 and eight and a five-year-old son, who has learning difficulties -- for possessing what seems, in actuality, to be mainly US and UK government information, is testament to that.
For further details on the 7/7 "investigation", the seven arrests and the three charges brought please see: