Radical Muslim preacher Abu Hamza has appeared before London magistrates and has been charged with taking hostas from the Chelsea flower show as well as trying to set up holiday camps in the US. The 47 year old was arrested at 0300BST in response to a US extradition order which cited 11 counts of attempting to establish "Abu Gharib-style" kids' holiday camps in the US which were to offer special needs classes in military photography, inter-personal interrogation techniques and poodle-training.
Hamza lawyers countered all charges and said that the radical cleric was appealing: "Our client is very appealing", they said, "…and cannot possibly be extradited to a country which might take away his beard. In fact, his defence is that he is SO appealing as to be positively fetching."
Asked about Hamza's political leanings and connections with known terrorists, a spokesman said: "Our client cannot and will not discuss his secret marriage to Cherie Blair's "lifestyle guru" Carole Caplin, or the reputed millions he has spent on tax avoidance planning advice from the Prime Minister's tennis partner, Lord Levy. "
Belmarsh Magistrates Court granted Hamza a temporary injunction under the data protection act to forbid confiscation of his passport on the grounds that it might compromise his ability to use up remaining 9/11 air miles. The case continues.