On May 14, 2008 police arrested Mr. Rizwan Sabir 22, a Masters student of NottinghamUniversityon suspicion of possessing extremist material. The material downloaded was an edited version of the Al Qaeda Training Manual from a USgovernment website for his postgraduate research. The manual was ‘well established as a document used for research in the field of counter-terrorism policy’, was also referred to in standard textbooks which was widely available to any layman.
Mr. Rizwan Sabir was confined for six days before he was released without any charges. On his release Mr. Sabir told ITC Central News that it was the most terrifying ordeal he ever had to go through and that the bureaucracy was against him and used police force as a show of power. Mr.Sabir who is of a Pakistani, said that he had to go through such pain and humiliation as he was an Asian and a Muslim.
Mr. Sabir proceeded against Nottinghamshire Police for false imprisonment and breaches of the Race Relations Act 1976 and the Human Right Act1998 Mr. Sabir claimed thatNottingham police had false and concocted information on its record that he had an earlier conviction on offences relating to terrorism which had put him to stoppages and searches by the police authorities. TheNottingham police admitted to have conducted such search on one occasion under a mistaken belief on part of their officer.
The Nottinghampolice settled the matter by; amending certain record which went against Mr. Sabir as was alleged by Mr.Sabir, and awarded a monetary compensation of £20000.
Though the money was very modest the aim of Mr. Sabir was to get his name cleared of the criminal charges which would have made his life a living hell. Through his grit and determination Mr.Sabir successfully defended and absolved himself of the stigma of being a terrorist.