Hoax suicide-bomber jailed

A man from Hove who threatened to blow-up two London embassies is starting a 15-month sentence.

Abdelkader Sahli, of Ingram Crescent, Hove, made the hoax bomb threats against the Iranian and Tunisian embassies  in a 999 call on August 24th last year.

Judge Martin Beddoe told the 48-year-old: "Anyone who makes a hoax bomb threat commits, in my judgment, an act of terrorism."

The judge said such threats stoked the fear of the public, "not least because of the terrible events that befell this city on July 7 2005".

Sentencing Sahli at Southwark Crown Court, the judge told him: "It advances the cause of those really intent on disrupting our society and putting the public in fear. Frontline services may be diverted from the task of seeking to protect us all."

He said hoax bomb threats meant public places and buildings might have to be evacuated, causing "great alarm" and inconvenience to many.

The judge said: "Courts must take cases such as this very seriously. It's some aggravation in your case that your threat was to blow up specific embassies and there was a suggestion that you may be a suicide bomber."

The judge added that the fact that police were well enough trained to assess the danger posed by the threat did not help Sahli's case.

Earlier, Paul Rooney, in mitigation, said Sahli was making a cry for help after allegedly being tortured in his home country.

Sahli pleaded guilty to communicating false information with intent.