The daddy of a person killed within the London Bridge assault has accused Boris Johnson of mendacity and making “political capital” from his son’s demise throughout the BBC leaders’ debate.
David Merritt – whose son Jack was stabbed to demise by convicted terrorist Usman Khan – referred to as the prime minister a fraud following his look on Friday night time’s TV debate, six days earlier than polling day.
Following final Friday’s assault, the Conservatives have pledged to toughen up jail sentences. Merritt believes this is able to have angered his son, who had “devoted his power to the aim” of prisoner rehabilitation.
“Johnson lied and used our son’s demise to make political capital,” Merritt mentioned in a thread posted on Twitter on Saturday. “Get up Britain: this man is a fraud. He’s the worst of us, and he’s taking you for a journey. You might assume the choices open to you on this election are usually not solely to your liking. Me neither, however I’ll be voting least worst choice: anti-Tory.”
In the course of the debate on Friday, the Labour chief, Jeremy Corbyn, challenged Johnson over remarks Merritt made final week, criticising using his son’s demise as a pretext to introduce harsher prison justice reforms.
Corbyn mentioned: “I used to be very moved by what Jack Merritt’s father mentioned about what his son was attempting to do. That he needed a society the place you probably did deal with the massive issues the place any person dedicated terrible acts like that – sure after all, you will need to imprison them, sure after all, you will need to try to rehabilitate them when you can.”
Responding to Corbyn’s problem, Johnson mentioned he had “enormous sympathy for Mr Merritt and the kinfolk and households of each victims, and it was a fully horrible factor”.
Johnson added: “However I nonetheless assume it’s improper that some one like Usman Khan, who was sentenced to 21 years … ought to have been robotically launched on eight years, when the decide, when he was first convicted, made it clear that he was a really severe jihadi.”
The assault befell on 29 November simply earlier than 2pm within the Fishmongers’ Corridor at an occasion run by Studying Collectively, a programme focussed on prisoner rehabilitation.
Khan had been launched robotically from jail on license in December final 12 months after serving eight years for plotting a terror assault on the London Inventory Trade.
He had initially been jailed indefinitely in 2012 underneath an imprisonment for public safety (IPP) sentence. Such a sentence was later scrapped by the Tories and Khan was sentenced to 16 years following a profitable attraction in 2013.
Khan was robotically launched halfway by this sentence underneath now-scrapped sentencing legal guidelines. The parole board didn’t assess Khan previous to his launch, regardless of the requests of a decide.
On Saturday morning, Merritt mentioned that Corbyn “spoke the reality final night time”, including that the information of assault – together with Khan’s motivation and what may have been carried out in a different way – is not going to be identified till an inquest is full.
He referred to as for an inquiry, quite than a “witch hunt”, to look at what will be carried out to stop future assaults and accused the Conservative of “attempting to look powerful on the backs of different prisoners’ struggling”.