Why is man accused of acid attack on Muslims not being charged under the Terrorism Act?

John Tomlin handed himself in an east London police station on Sunday [Image: Metropolitan Police].

Acid attack suspect John Tomlin has been charged with committing grievous bodily harm in an acid attack against two Muslims – but calls for him to be charged under the Terrorism Act appear to have gone unanswered.

Here’s The Independent‘s report:

A man has been charged following an acid attack on an aspiring model and her cousin that left them with life-changing injuries.

John Tomlin, 24, will appear before Thames Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday to face two counts of grievous bodily harm with intent, Scotland Yard said.

Resham Khan and Jameel Muhktar, 37, were attacked by a suspect, who threw acid through their car window on Ms Khan’s 21st birthday, in Beckton, east London, on 21 June.

The problem is, the attacks may be seen as breaches of anti-terror legislation – or is that only triggered if attacks are against white Europeans?

According to the Terrorism Act 2000, the attack appears to have been “designed to… intimidate the public or a section of the public, and…  for the purpose of advancing a political, religious[, racial] or ideological cause”.

We will have to pay close attention to the evidence at the trial, to see if it bears out this suggestion. If so, then the suspect may be undergoing trial for the wrong crime.

Bear in mind that – as This Site previously reported – the acid attack on Resham Khan and Jameel Mukhtar was the 84th, in London alone, in the past six months.

There is something deeply sinister about a series of incidents of this kind being treated in this way.

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4 thoughts on “Why is man accused of acid attack on Muslims not being charged under the Terrorism Act?

  1. Barry Davies

    Unfortunately the definition of terrorism varies between nations, there has to be political motivation for an act to be deemed to be terrorist in the UK. I would imaging that a charge of grievous bodily harm would have a far better chance of success in a UK court than one of terrorism in this case.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      Ah, but a conviction for terrorism would send a strong message!
      And the definition of terrorism, as laid down in the Act of Parliament, is as I described it.

    1. wildswimmerpete

      @Zippi
      To add to the confusion while the IRA (true terrorists) has been disbanded however the splinter group Continuity IRA are merely regarded as criminal gangsters.

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