The LBC host questioned James Brokenshire on why the Libyan national from Reading wasn’t being monitored despite being known to MI5. The 25-year-old man, understood to be named Khairi Saadallah, was detained a short distance from the scene at Forbury Gardens and arrested on suspicion of murder. He was later re-arrested under Section 41 of the Terrorism Act, which gives police the power to detain him without charge for up to 14 days.
Speaking on his LBC show, Mr Ferrari said: “Let me assure you Minister, nothing sticks in my listeners’ craw more than hearing the Prime Minister saying ‘lessons will be learned’.
“I urge you and your colleagues to find a different form of words, as they do find it rather sickening.
“Perhaps one lesson might be – and I know you can’t comment on this case – that someone involved in a case such as this less than three weeks after leaving jail, yet there’s no monitoring of him whatsoever.
“Presumably going forward in cases such as these, when we’re letting someone out who’s beaten up a police officer, racially-aggravated assault, carrying a knife – we might keep an eye on him. Would that be an idea, Minister?”
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Mr Brokenshire responded: “I’m not going to comment on specifics.
“But the point that you make about people who are released from prison, those who are identified of being at risk of being involved in terrorism, absolutely.
“I would point you to many occasions in the past when the police and security services have done just that, to disrupt attacks in this country.
“If there are changes that need to be made as a consequence of this terrible, terrible case, then absolutely, that is what we will do.
When asked what he would say to people in Reading who are concerned, Mr Brokenshire added: “People should be alert, not alarmed.
“People must remain vigilant, our terrorist threat level is at substantial – the third level which means an attack is likely.
“But we need to go about our lives, we need to be able to ensure that those who would seek to intimidate, those who would seek to use terror to try and change our way of life, that they do not succeed but we remain vigilant.”
He adeed that there was no indication of a change to the UK’s threat level.