Former Guantanamo Bay prisoner from Dollis Hill to receive compensation from the Government
Father-of-five was locked up for five years in US camp
A FORMER Guantanamo Bay detainee from Dollis Hill who was locked up for five years will receive an undisclosed payout from the British Government.
Jamil el-Banna, 47, is one of several former prisoners who will receive payments after they were thrown into the US camp in 2003.
Mr el-Banna, A British citizen and Jordanian national, had started legal action against the British Government claiming they were complicit in the torture he claims to have suffered.
A total of 12 men, including Mr el-Banna, had started legal proceedings in the High Court.
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On Tuesday, the Justice Secretary Ken Clarke announced the Government will make out-of-court settlements for Mr el-Banna and 15 other men from the UK who were all detained in the camp in Cuba.
The father-of-five’s ordeal began when he was arrested at Gatwick Airport in November 2002, for carrying a ‘suspicious device’ that turned out to be a battery charger from Argos.
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After questioning, Mr el-Banna and his friend Bisher al-Rawl were allowed to continue their journey to Gambia but he was arrested again and handed over to the CIA.
Three months later he was flown to Guantanamo Bay where he was locked up for almost five years, and where he claims was tortured and treated inhumanely.
Following a hard-hitting campaign by the Times, human-right groups and politicians he was eventually freed in December 2007 and reunited with his family.
But, he was arrested again on suspicion of being a member of a Spanish al-Qaeda cell and faced being extradited to face terrorism charges.
However, in March 2008 a Spanish judge deemed he was too weak to stand trial and the charges were dropped.
Speaking exclusively to the Times after the charges were dropped, Mr el-Banna said: “I know there are people out there who still believe I’m a bad person, who think I must have done something wrong otherwise I wouldn’t have been detained in Guantanamo for five years.
“I want those people to know the truth, that I am innocent.”