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Passion Islam I August 2009 LOCAL & NATIONAL NEWS I 3
News of the World to pay £100,000
in libel damages after terrorist slur
responsible for nor is he or has ever been a member
channelling funds of a militant cell.
to organisations to “The News of the World now
pay for weapons accepts that he has no connection
to be used against with terrorism whatsoever and in
British forces in fact earns his living honestly as a car
Afghanistan. mechanic in High Wycombe.
Acting for Akhtar, The News of the World has agreed
Edward Yell, told the to pay compensation of £100,000 plus
High Court today legal costs and to publish an apology
the paper then in this Sunday’s edition of the paper.
passed a dossier Yell added: “Mr Akhtar would like to
of “supposed make it clear that he does not support
A mechanic accused of being the evidence” to or condone violence against British
financier of an Islamic cell responsible Thames Valley Police who later raided forces in Afghanistan, or indeed
for channelling funds to banned Akhtar’s home. anywhere.
terrorist organisations today won Yell, of London law firm Carter- “Mr Akhtar and his family have
£100,000 in libel damages and an Ruck, said the allegations had been been caused great hurt, distress and
apology from the News of the World. seized upon by elements of the far- fear by the baseless allegations which
Shakil Akhtar, from High Wycombe, right despite Akhtar never having were made against him by the News
sued the News Group newspaper after been arrested or charged over this or of the World.
it published a double-page spread on any other offence. “He is a devout Muslim and his
February 3, 2008, headlined “Evil on “The truth of the matter, which standing in the local community has
benefits”. the News of the World now accepts, been badly affected by the article and
The article alleged Akhtar was is that Mr Akhtar is not and never we take the opportunity to reassure
“a central figure in a dangerous and has been involved in the funding of his friends and neighbours that there
militant Islamic cell” in which he was terrorism in any way whatsoever, and was no truth in these allegations.”
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