Bomb-kit Syrian not subject to police visits

Faris Al-Khori admitted a breach of the 1883 Explosive Substances Act. Picture: Contributed
Faris Al-Khori admitted a breach of the 1883 Explosive Substances Act. Picture: Contributed
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A FORMER Syrian doctor who had a hoard of explosive ingredients and recipes for bombs will not be subject to police visits under a court order when freed from jail next month.

Social services wanted a supervising officer making home visits to Faris al-Khori, potentially accompanied by another social worker, housing officer or police officer.

But Khori’s lawyers objected to police being part of the visits under a 12-month court-imposed supervision order and a judge agreed that should be struck out.

Khori’s lawyer Brian McConnachie QC told the High Court in Edinburgh: “Attendance, effectively unfettered and unsupervised, by the police is a step too far.”

Khori was jailed earlier this year for 40 months after he was found in possession of chemicals, nails, ball bearings, bolts and nuts and a bag of toxic beans, which can be used to produce the poison ricin.

The haul was found when firefighters attended a 999 call over a fire at a rubbish chute at the Fidra Court tower block in Muirhouse last year.

Advocate depute Alex Prentice QC earlier said hand written notes which “appear to be instructions on how to prepare explosives and bombs,” were found.

Damascus-born Khori said the acetone found was used to clean carpets and the peroxide was for cleaning up after pigeons. He originally faced Terrorism Act charges but the Crown felt there was no basis for them.

He instead admitted a breach of the 1883 Explosives Substances Act and pleaded guilty to possessing explosive substances between December 27, 2007 and April last year.

He was ordered to be supervised for a further year following release to protect the public. Social services asked that he live in approved accommodation, his supervising officer make home visits, possibly accompanied by another social worker, housing officer or a police officer and that room inspections be carried out.

Judge Lady Wolffe agreed to the provisions apart from an accompanying police officer. Mr McConnachie told her Khorsi, 63, is due to be released next month and plans to live with his wife in West Lothian. He said there was no difficulty with the idea that the supervising officer would be entitled to ask if he could look around the property. He said: “The difficulty is in the idea that the supervising officer may at all times and over time be accompanied by a police officer.”

He said the social worker’s suggestion would provide police “unlimited power to enter and search”.