Babar Ahmad (born in London in 1974) is a British citizen and a Muslim of Pakistani descent, who was released in July 2015 after spending 11 years in prison in the US and Britain. From prison, he fought a public 8-year legal battle, seeking to be tried in Britain. The British Crown Prosecution Service concluded that there was "insufficient evidence to prosecute" him.
In 2009, the High Court in London awarded Babar £60,000 compensation after the London Metropolitan Police admitted that its officers had subjected him to "serious gratuitous prolonged unjustified violence" and "religious abuse" during his arrest which led to 73 forensically identified injuries. It was revealed that the officers, who abused Babarwere also accused of dozens of other assaults on black and Asian men. The revelation lead the Mayor of London Boris Johnson to order an independent review of the case. In 2010, the review led the Crown Prosecution Service to announce that four serving police officers would face criminal charges for assaulting Babar. The four officers were acquitted by a jury in June 2011, some of whom shook hands with the police officers that they had just acquitted. In October 2015, a London High Court of Justice judge ruled that PC Mark Jones, one of the officers acquitted in the Babar Ahmad case, assaulted and racially abused two Arab teenage boys in another case.
In 2011, celebrities and senior British lawyers backed a public campaign which led to 140,000 British citizens signing a UK Government e-petition calling for him to be tried in the UK. His case was subsequently debated twice in the British Parliament. Babar was extradited from Britain to the United States in 2012. After spending two years in solitary confinement at a US Supermax prison he pleaded guilty to "conspiracy and providing material support to terrorism". His offence was allowing two articles supporting the Taliban to be posted on a website that he helped to set up in 1996.
In 2014, US federal Judge Janet Hall sentenced Babar to an unexpectedly lenient sentence and concluded that Babar Ahmad was not a terrorist. She ruled, "There was never any aid given by these defendants to effectuate a plot. By plot, I mean a terrorist plot ... Neither of these two defendants were interested in what is commonly known as terrorism ..." She described Babar Ahmad as a “good person” who she believed posed no threat to the public and stated she had weighed the seriousness of his crime with his good character after reading thousands of letters of support and hearing from British prison officials who described him as an exemplary inmate. Judge Hall said “It appears to me that he [Babar] is a generous, thoughtful person who is funny and honest. He is well liked and humane and empathetic... This is a good person who does not and will not act in the future to harm other people."
On the 19th of July 2015, Babar Ahmad was finally returned to his family after spending 11 years in prison in the US and Britain.