Inmates who threatened to kill officer at jail near York jailed for extra six years

Lifers get extra six years for threatening to murder prison officer

Lifers get extra six years for threatening to murder prison officer

First published in News
Last updated
York Press: Photograph of the Author by , Chief reporter

TWO lifers at a top security jail near York have each been jailed for an additional six years for threatening to kill a prison officer, days after the murder of Fusilier Lee Rigby.

Feroz Khan and Fuad Awale, both 26, were found guilty at the Old Bailey last week following the incident at Full Sutton Prison last May.

Khan was also convicted of inflicting grievous bodily harm on prison officer Richard Thompson after relations between Muslim inmates and guards became "strained'' in the days following Fusilier Rigby's death.

Mr Thompson was ambushed as he walked into a cleaning office and held for nearly five hours. Khan struck him in the face and fractured his eye socket before threatening to kill him.

Passing sentence, Judge Michael Topolski QC said: "This was a premeditated, well planned and carefully orchestrated attack on a single and previously identified prison officer, who was, as such, performing a public duty and upon whom it has had a significant impact.

"The events as a whole formed part of a joint enterprise involving force and weapons, committed by men with convictions for murder.

"Given the context, the level of threats uttered and repeated were truly appalling, causing great anguish, not just to prison officer Thompson but also his colleagues who were convinced he was going to die in horrific circumstances."

Paul Hynes QC, defending Khan, who was already serving a 20 year minimum sentence for murder, said his client had hit Mr Thompson "harder than he meant to and harder than was necessary, by his own admission."

Joel Bennathan QC, mitigating for Awale, already serving a minimum of 38 years for a double murder, said it had been shown there was no "terrorist motive" behind the attack, and that the men had made their demands "for effect" rather than as an "act of jihad."

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