Failed asylum seeker Khairi Saadallah avoided deportation to Libya for more than seven years before going on a murderous stabbing spree that authorities labelled a terror attack because human rights laws forbid deporting foreigners if their native country is unstable.
The revelation came during the sentencing hearing of the 26-year-old Libyan at the Old Bailey on Tuesday. In November, Saadallah pleaded guilty to murdering three men and attempting to murder three others during a stabbing rampage at a Reading park on June 20th, 2020. During the multi-day sentencing hearing, the prosecution is arguing that Saadallah was influenced by Islamist jihadist ideology to commit a premeditated terror attack and that he should face life in prison.
The prosecution told the court, according to the Evening Standard, that Saadallah travelled from Tripoli, Libya, to the UK in 2012 on a visitor’s visa then claimed asylum, alleging that he had fled an armed group that had helped overthrow Colonel Muammar Gaddafi.
His refugee application was rejected, but rather than obey the leave order, he “absconded” in 2013, only to come to the attention of authorities again due to his criminal activity. Reports from 2020 revealing that over the next seven years, the failed asylum seeker had racked up a series of convictions and prison sentences including for battery, assault of a female police officer, and racially aggravated harassment.