Skip to main content

Former UK Guantanamo detainee Moazzam Begg charged with Syria terror offenses

By Laura Smith-Spark, CNN
updated 7:53 PM EST, Sun March 2, 2014
Former Guantanamo Bay detainee British citizen Moazzam Begg, pictured here at a 2012 press conference, is accused of providing instruction and training for terrorism and funding terrorism overseas.
Former Guantanamo Bay detainee British citizen Moazzam Begg, pictured here at a 2012 press conference, is accused of providing instruction and training for terrorism and funding terrorism overseas.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Moazzam Begg appears in court charged with providing training for terrorism
  • NEW: Begg denies that charge and another of funding terrorism overseas
  • NEW: A 44-year-old woman also denies a charge of funding terrorism overseas
  • Begg spent nearly three years in U.S. custody in Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay

London (CNN) -- A former Guantanamo Bay detainee from Britain appeared in a London court Saturday, charged with Syria-related terrorism offenses, UK police said.

Moazzam Begg, 45, from Birmingham, is accused of providing instruction and training for terrorism and funding terrorism overseas, West Midlands Police said.

A 44-year-old woman, Gerrie Tahari, also from Birmingham, is also accused of funding terrorism overseas.

Both suspects, who were arrested Tuesday and charged late Friday, denied the charges at Westminster Magistrates' Court.

Prisoner's-eye-view of Guantanamo

They were remanded in custody to appear at the Old Bailey criminal court in London on March 14.

Two other men, aged 20 and 36, who were also arrested on Tuesday remain in custody, the police said.

Begg was arrested as a suspected al Qaeda member in Pakistan in February 2002 and was held at the U.S. airbase at Bagram, Afghanistan, before being sent to the U.S. prison camp at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Begg spent nearly three years in custody. He was sent back to Britain by the Bush administration in early 2005 and was never prosecuted.

He co-authored a book about his experiences at Guantanamo Bay in 2006 and has appeared as a public speaker and commentator in Britain and overseas since his release.

READ: Amanpour blog: Former Guantanamo prisoner befriends jailers

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 7:51 PM EST, Sun November 23, 2014
Where do hip young things hang out in Taiwan?
updated 8:18 PM EST, Sun November 23, 2014
The interior of the Formosa Boulevard Mass Rapid Transit Station in Kaohsiung, in southern Taiwan.
Stunning stations where your first priority won't be finding the nearest exit.
updated 5:43 AM EST, Mon November 24, 2014
A 30-year-old woman has been charged with attempting to kill a baby police say spent five days down a drain before being discovered by cyclists.
updated 8:21 PM EST, Thu November 20, 2014
If it wasn't for a comic's skit, Bill Cosby would still be America's favorite father, says expert.
updated 10:50 AM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
Obama orders the most sweeping overhaul of U.S. immigration in decades, prioritizing the deportation of "felons, not families."
updated 4:06 PM EST, Tue November 18, 2014
Fighters loyal to ISIS are now in control of Derna, a city on Libya's Mediterranean coast.
updated 6:19 PM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
China and likely other countries have the capacity to shut down the U.S. power grid, says the NSA.
updated 2:45 PM EST, Wed November 19, 2014
The founder of a U.S. nonprofit that works with returning soldiers is named CNN's Hero of the Year.
updated 12:38 PM EST, Mon November 17, 2014
A Syrian cleric condemns ISIS and its execution of U.S. hostage Peter Kassig.
updated 12:29 PM EST, Tue November 18, 2014
TV anchor wears the same suit for a year. Female colleague wears new outfit daily. Who gets criticized?
updated 7:39 AM EST, Tue November 25, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT