Terrorism in Scotland: Anwar’s vindication?
The Court of Criminal Appeal announced on 29 January 2010 that it was minded to overturn the 2007 conviction of Mohammed Atif Siddique for terrorism offences, as he had suffered a “miscarriage of justice” through "material misdirection" by the trial judge.
Scots Law News readers will recall that Siddique's case was the one which led to his solicitor Aamer Anwar being charged with contempt of court after he publicly criticised the handling of the case following his client's conviction. Anwar was however subsequently found not guilty of that charge.
The material misdirection in Siddique's case related to the main charge, that of possessing articles in circumstances which give rise to a reasonable suspicion that their possession was for a purpose connected with the commission, preparation or instigation of an act of terrorism. He is currently serving an eight-year sentence.
The Court afforded the Crown Office an opportunity to decide whether to launch a fresh prosecution against Siddique. A further hearing will be held on 9 February 2010, pending the decision of the Crown Office.