Tendance Coatesy

Left Socialist Blog

George Galloway, Aisha Ali-Khan and a Very Curious Story of the Met.

with 16 comments

This story in the Guardian today is not at all a sign  of the British state’s rude democratic health.

People may have missed it – it’s not a large article and not everybody reads the Guardian – so it’s worth extracting and commenting upon.

George Galloway‘s former secretary has been arrested, along with a Metropolitan police officer, on suspicion of data protection offences.

Afiz Khan, an officer with the Met’s SO15 anti-terrorism branch, was arrested on Wednesday, along with Aisha Ali-Khan, who until recently worked as a PA for the Respect MP for Bradford West.

Ali-Khan was suspended by Galloway in October when he publicly accused her of being a Met police “agent” running an undercover operation from his constituency office. He demanded an investigation by the home secretary, Theresa May, into what he called a “dirty tricks” campaign orchestrated by Khan. The arrests are unrelated to these allegations, which are the subject of an investigation.

Police are trying to ascertain how Galloway got hold of private emails between Ali-Khan and Khan, which he showed to journalists as “incontrovertible evidence” that there was a plot against him. Ali-Khan insists her Hotmail address was hacked and accuses Galloway of sanctioning the hacking, a charge Galloway has always denied.

Ali-Khan told the Guardian in October that Khan was her husband, producing the Muslim nikah marriage certificate to prove the two wed in 2009. She has always claimed the emails merely showed a husband counselling his wife in how to deal with bullying and misogyny in Respect’s Bradford office. Both Khan and Ali-Khan have been bailed to return pending further inquiries in early March 2013.

He is suspected of misusing Met police databases and abusing his position as a police officer, and has been on restricted duties since October.

The background is this  “Galloway to demand Home Secretary acts on police ‘dirty tricks’

Galloway stated in October.

“A very senior officer in SO15 has been feeding disinformation aimed at damaging me to a national newspaper and to others, aided by a member of staff in Bradford who has now been suspended,’ Galloway said. ‘This involved him using the Met email as well as creating at least two false email addresses to spread the deceit. I have incontrovertible evidence. He either did this a freelance or it was sanctioned by his superiors. I will be asking the Home Secretary tomorrow (Monday) to act on this and also bringing it to the attention of the Speaker of the House of Commons.’ “

The Daily Mail (not known to favour Galloway) published this on the 18th of October,

Galloway’s spokesman and associate for the last 36 years, Ron McKay, said: ‘Aisha Ali Khan had become George’s aide after turning up at the Respect headquarters in Bradford before his election campaign. I think she used to be a teacher.

‘There was some concern that she had been involved with the Labour Party. She worked for George in Bradford and in London – and while he was away in Indonesia in June he gave her the keys to his house in Streatham..

‘A short while after George came back there was a break-in at his house when he, his wife and Aisha were in, and the burglars made off with a parliamentary computer.

‘Local police were investigating – but it was then that Aisha introduced Afiz Khan to George as a police officer and security expert who could help him beef up his home security.

‘It transpired a few hours later that Insp Khan had declared to the cops investigating the burglary that they would find his fingerprints in the house because he had been sleeping in the house with Aisha while George was away.

‘That was George’s rude introduction to what had been going on.

 The Guardian continues,

“Among the ‘allegations’ made by Officer K through the Met police email was that he had evidence that there was voter fraud in the Bradford by-election – which Galloway won with a majority of more than 10,000.

The officer also slept in George’s house in Streatham, London, along with the female agent on Galloway’s staff, Ms A, when the MP was away, and he had to confess this when investigation of a break-in to the home would have discovered his fingerprints and DNA.Galloway said: “I understand inquiries are still ongoing so for that reason I cannot comment.” Ali-Khan faces a disciplinary hearing on Monday about the reasons for her suspension.”

Without in any way backing Galloway, and with all the comments we could make about him,  we have to say that the  police’s role whole story stinks.

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Written by Andrew Coates

December 7, 2012 at 1:29 pm

16 Responses

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  1. A parliament needs a few mavericks, although George was never much of a Parliamentarian.

    It is wholly unsurprising that the political Establishment hate George and are eager to discredit him in the same way that the Establishment were furious when the British National Party were fortunate enough to get two MPs elected.

    George is a silly ninny about some things but bang right about others.

    If people had listened to George a few years ago, a lot of squaddies and a lot more Iraqis would be alive today.

    Bingo Little

    December 8, 2012 at 2:38 am

  2. George was never much of a Parliamentarian.

    What an absurd comment – he’s probably the last great parliamentary orator of our time

    Strategist

    December 8, 2012 at 4:41 am

  3. As usual the far left see conspiracies everywhere still believing that great tribune of the people Galloway is considered such a threat to capitalism that they will infiltrate his inner circle, nonsense. Let’s look at the evidence so far.

    Within a very short space of time from getting involved with Respect in Bradford after, according to long time aide Ron McKay, “turning up at the Respect headquarters in Bradford before his election campaign. I think she used to be a teacher. There was some concern that she used to be involved with the Labour Party. She worked for George in Bradford and London-and while he was away in Indonesia he gave her the keys to his house in Streatham”

    Let’s look at this. A stranger turns up and within a short space of time, Galloway and co are,vague on this, is employed and given the keys to his house in South London. There was some concern apparently that she had been in the Labour Party. Why this should be I have no idea because if you subtract the SWP and other Trots from the equation everyone in Respect has been in the Labour Party.

    There was also no reason why she needed housing in London if she was organising Galloway’s constituency of Bradford. A much more likely scenario why George would allow a person whom he had only just met to use his house is that he has always had a penchant for attractive Asian and Middle Eastern ladies and no doubt wanted to discuss the Kashmiri situation at some length!

    In her Guardian article of the 18th of October Helen Pidd quotes Galloway as saying that he had discoverd that she was an agent running a dirty tricks campaign. The Mail article quoted above and which as Coatsy correctly points out is not known to favour Galloway continues with this.

    A short while after George came back there was was a break in at the house when he, his wife and Aisha were in, and the burglars made off with a parliamentary computer. There are some exceptionally stupid criminals in south London so maybe it was one of them but it will be interesting to see if there ever was a burglary.

    Then two interesting things happen. The Guardian claims that at this point Aisha introduces Inspector Khan to Galloway as a security expert and police officer who could help him beef up the security on the property. Almost at the same time, and all of the writers here are vague on dates, Khan then reveals to the officers investigating the burglary that he is a police officer and that his fingerprints and DNA will be found there as he has been spending night there with his wife.

    There was no need whatsoever for Aisha to spending time in London in relation to her work for Galloway as besides McKay at least two other former SWP/Respect full timers continued to take the Galloway shilling after the Respect collapse and one of them, Kevin Ovendon, lives in East London.

    A much more likely scenario is that Galloway wanted some Kashmiri discussions and when he discovered that the husband had been in the house in his absence started working up a conspiracy theory, he is a past master at that.

    Let’s look at the time scale we have. In 2009 a marriage takes place. The Muslim form is quite common and even now many couples do not register it at the local Register Office.

    At the time of the marriage Khan was already a policeman, he would have had to have been in order to be an Inspector three years later. Whether or not he was in SO15 at the time or not we don’t know but he certainly ended up there.

    What is of importance is what, if anything, was agreed between Khan and his superiors. If it was a honey trap operation, it was well know that Galloway had an eye for exotic eastern ladies, then it was a spectacularly mismanaged one and heads will roll.

    What is much more likely is that Khan used the opportunity of his wife being employed by Galloway to launch his own career boosting which has come unstuck as well. I think that the arrest is because he has has breached a whole load of police regulations and she is involved in that.

    As for a government authorised sting against Galloway, well he is pretty much finished and his every move is already well watched both from GCHQ and Langley Virginia. It will still be interesting to see what happens.

    themadmullahofbricklane

    December 8, 2012 at 11:07 am

  4. Thanks Maddy, I was hoping somebody would clarify all this.

    Galloway is a political huckster and there is little more to add to that.

    Mind you the British state can be spectacularly incompetent.

    I have heard (from somembody near enough to the events to know them in detail) that the Special Branch got somebody close to John Archer in Wood Green North London while monitoring CND. This was in the 1980s.

    John Archer, for all his undoubted merits (http://www.whatnextjournal.co.uk/Pages/Back/Wnext18/Calvert.html), was the leader of the mighty British branch of the ‘Lambertists’ (Socialist Labour Group http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socialist_Labour_Group).

    No doubt this dangerous Trot, and his local telephone box meeting room, had the bourgeoisie trembling in their boots.

    Then, more recently Agent Provacteur Mark Kennedy has scored some spectacular coups in the ‘Tarnac Affair’ and eleswhere.

    http://tendancecoatesy.wordpress.com/2012/11/10/police-spy-mark-kennedy-and-the-tarnac-affair/

    Andrew Coates

    December 8, 2012 at 12:24 pm

  5. George Galloway’s Respect party is in turmoil once more after the resignation of its second leader in three months.

    Arshad Ali stood down as national chair this week after it emerged he had a spent conviction for electoral fraud. He had been elected to the top of the leftwing anti-war party at the start of November.

    Ali’s departure follows that of Salma Yaqoob, the former Birmingham city councillor who had led the party since its birth in 2004.

    More here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/dec/07/respect-party-loses-second-leader

    Andrew Coates

    December 8, 2012 at 5:12 pm

  6. I wouldn’t have thought that Galloway needed the help fo Special Branch to look an ass and discredit himself. I suppose they could have been collecting information, but that’s just one of the risks of being politically engaged. Why on earth would you give such an intimate job to someone you hardly know if you are worried about security? I knw John Archer in Wood Green. It was all described in a book by a former MI5 operative, Cathy Massiter. She described how CND had been infiltrated by Harry Newton and one of his tasks was to keep an eye on JOhn Archer. Interestingly, another friend told me that his mother had been engaged to Harry Newton back in Leeds (around the time of the Second World War) or Harry Newton had entertained expectations. There was one weekend where Newton disappeared for the whole weekend and returned a changed man. After his mother married someone else, Harry Newton never spoke to her again.

    The woman he did marry was a police officer. I don’t knowd if she did undercover work as well. But the Archers were very fond of collecting signatures on petitions for various causes and then inviting people they hoped to recruit to come round their house and transcribe the names and addresses. I believe the Newtons were keen on this and used to help out a lot.

    Sue R

    December 8, 2012 at 6:33 pm

  7. Looked at the two links to the various Trotskyist groups and my reaction is, what a waste of life. Didn’t they realise that it was all a waste of time. Did they have families or friends outside of the movement or did it take over their lives completely? Really sad.

    themadmullahofbricklane

    December 9, 2012 at 4:50 am

  8. The other Galloway aide is Rob Hoveman who also stayed on his payroll after the Respect collapse, he had been a leading light in the SWP. Does anyone know if he lives in London? I think he must as Bradford has only just become important. If that is the case then at least three Galloway full timers were living/working in the capital so Aisha’s presence becomes explicable only by Kashmiri discussions.

    themadmullahofbricklane

    December 9, 2012 at 5:55 am

  9. When he was in the SWP Rob Hoveman was the National Secretary of the Socialist Alliance.

    You may be interested in this:

    Corruption: SWP behaviour in the Socialist Alliance – statement

    “Statement by Liz Davies and Mike Marqusee on SWP behaviour in the Socialist Alliance, posted on Socialist Unity website, October 2004

    Ben Drake asks: “On a heavier note, can I ask that you clarify your comments on finances in the Socialist Alliance? I don’t think you meant to imply fraud or dodgy dealings, rather what you felt were formally incorrect procedures. But people might mistakenly read in darker implications, especially as this is a public access website.”

    Unfortunately, what happened in the Socialist Alliance was much more serious than “formally incorrect procedures” and does indeed carry “darker implications”. Ben appears here to be innocently reflecting the self-serving falsehoods disseminated by the SWP leadership about this affair.

    What follows is a brief summary by Liz Davies and Mike Marqusee of the events that led both to leave the Socialist Alliance, of which Liz was, at that time, national chair.

    1. As chair of the SA, Liz was one of the authorised signatories of cheques drawn on the Socialist Alliance account. In October 2002, she became aware that at least three individuals had been involved in forging her signature on a number of Socialist Alliance cheques over a period of several months.

    2. The individuals were the SA National Secretary, the SA Membership Secretary and the SA full-time office worker. The office worker and the National Secretary were both prominent members of the SWP. Indeed, the National Secretary was a long-standing SWP full-timer with overall responsibility for the SWP’s relations with the Socialist Alliance.

    3. The repeated forgery of Liz’s signature was kept secret (for several months) from Liz herself as well as from the Treasurer and the SA Executive. It was only discovered by accident.

    4. It has been claimed that the signature was forged as a result of emergency requirements. There is no truth whatsoever in that claim and no evidence to support it. Liz was readily available to sign cheques for bona fide requirements and was in touch with all three individuals on an almost daily basis throughout the four month period during which the forgeries were taking place and being kept secret. She was a regular visitor to the SA office, where they worked.

    5. When Liz discovered the forgeries, she immediately registered a strong objection to the practise directly to all those involved. The first response was a threatening telephone message from one of the SWP’s most prominent Central Committee members. This was one of several attempts to bully us into silence (followed up by a smear campaign).

    6 . The SWP members involved in the forgery refused to accept that it was a serious matter or that the practise was wrong. “It’s a matter of convenience where we come from,” Liz was told by the SA National Secretary, who berated her for informing the other national officers of her discovery. The SWP was absolutely determined that the affair be covered up and that the guilty parties not be held to account in any form.

    7. When Liz insisted on reporting the forgeries to the SA Executive, the SWP members’ response was to call her a “scab”, accuse her of “witch-hunting” and argue that no steps at all should be taken against the perpetrators. Sadly, this irresponsible and unethical position was endorsed by most of the rest of the Executive, including the representatives of Socialist Resistance, the AWL and the CPGB.

    8. Several weeks after Liz’s resignation, she was given (on her insistence) a list of 7 cheques on which her signature had been forged. Five of those seven cheques were made directly payable either to one of the three individuals involved or to ‘cash’. The five cheques were drawn for a total of more than £3,000. Liz had been completely unaware, until she received this list, that the forged cheques had been made payable to the perpetrators.

    We are sure that activists on the left will understand why, in the autumn of 2002, we were reluctant to make any of this public. We were worried about various potential repercussions and especially about the damage that such publicity might have had on the anti-war movement at a crucial stage in its development (during the run-up to the invasion of Iraq). However, at this stage, there seems no reason not to provide Ben with a straight reply to a straight question.

    It is vital that Ben and other members of the SWP realise that this was not a dispute over procedures. The forging of the cheques was not an administrative error or a blunder by an inexperienced individual. It was a sustained course of deception and financial impropriety engaged in by experienced individuals occupying major positions of trust and responsibility. It was an offence not only against the SA officers, but the SA as a whole, all those who had paid dues to it and all those who had offered it support. It betrayed a shockingly cynical contempt for essential democratic procedures and rudimentary principles of accountability.

    We therefore stand by Mike’s statement in his reply to Ben: “In the Socialist Alliance, flagrant financial dishonesty was practised by SWP full-timers over a period of months. When this was uncovered, accidentally, the SWP leadership (with help from others) blocked all efforts to bring those responsible to account.”

    This whole matter is very much about politics and political principles. Those who have claimed otherwise are either protecting themselves or living in denial.

    Sometimes the truth is unpalatable, but it is, nonetheless, the truth.”

    http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2004/10/298789.html?c=on

    There was an article in Tribune – source, well guess – giving a basic outline of this when Liz resigned.

    Andrew Coates

    December 9, 2012 at 11:47 am

  10. The can of worms? Nothing can be built on lies. Shall we start again?

    themadmullahofbricklane

    December 9, 2012 at 5:17 pm

  11. My concern with this whole affair is the use or rather misuse of Muslim women’s rights for one’s own gain – and that is what I fear has happened here – again. Aisha Ali Khan is no stranger to controversy. Last year she took a Muslim charity to court for unfair dismissal, accusing them of sexual discrimination. Could she have been sacked not because of her gender but rather her lack of competency with computers? – as she admits to the guardian. One thing is for sure – this isn’t the first mess she has been known to leave behind.

    ‘She admits to asking Khan to set up a fake email address…He did it for her, she says “because I’m not that literate with computers” The Guardian, 18th October 2012

    What business does someone who can’t even set up an email address have working as a PA? Does anyone else think this could be a porky pie on Ms Ali Khan’s part?

    Her marriage is also of concern in this case, particularly its ‘hush hush’ nature as she reports. Mr Khan lives in Watford with his wife (not Ms Ali Khan) and their children, Ms Ali Khan lives in Bradford. The on/ off hush hush marriage is not something Islam supports. If one marries one should not conceal it, nor only claim to be married when convenient. What on earth is that all about? It’s certainly not hush hush now that’s for certain. Can we assume the reason Ms Ali Khan wanted to spend so much time in London was to be in convenient proximity to Mr Khan, given he lives with his other wife and kids? I’m guessing his home in Watford wouldn’t have been an option for the two to spend quality time together : /

    I agree the whole thing does stink and the very sad thing about this, from a community perspective, is we have someone here using the misogyny/ victim card when it suits. It’s a sad sorry affair for all those working for the betterment of grass roots Muslim communities and those who have faith in political participation as a vehicle for community mobilisation. People like Ms Ali Khan need to learn the meaning of the word professionalism and understand the damage their actions and words can have. Perhaps she should do the community a favour and stay away from NGOs and the public sector from now on.

    Faith Ahmet

    December 16, 2012 at 6:14 am

  12. I heard she was then sacked, and given some days to appeal; he is also sacked
    Now we need to see if they go to jail. I wonder if she will produce the british marriage certificate not that dodgy muslim one; jail for anyone who are the police or friends with the police is scary…….

    Big bada badmash

    December 16, 2012 at 9:45 pm

  13. well today they both got charged, as expected . its obvious that Aisha ali is not his wife when he already has a wife. besides they were divorced; it was all a sham marriage – I know this for sure. I heard Aisha ali is a spy on the muslim community and there is a backlash against her. No muslim should trust this woman who made false sex allegations against innocent muslims. she is a nasty piece of work whether muslim or not; she is better off working as a dustbin lady (no insult to the bin men)

    bigbadabadmash

    July 25, 2013 at 11:11 pm

  14. The so15 officer charged with leaking arrest plans for hate preacher Anjem Choudhary (who radicalised one of the Lee Rigby murderers) pleaded guilty at Southwark Crown Court on Thursday 19 December 2013. This can be independently verified by speaking to Southwark Crown Court on 020 7522 7200 quoting case number T20137414

    The Metropolitan Police have press released on this here http://www.met.police.uk/pressbureau/Bur19/page12.htm

    It has been reported here albeit briefly http://crimeandjustice.co.uk/2013/12/19/detective-inspector-afiz-khan-pleads-guilty-to-misconduct-in-a-public-office/

    And footage from yesterday’s court appearance is here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uifP2ZkngoA

    Haji Iqbal Rathore

    December 20, 2013 at 12:10 pm

  15. Aisha Ali Khan has been Jailed for contempt of court. I reckon she and Afiz were trying blackmail the first wife and its badly backfired; they will both be shoved in prison ; she is getting it now in Holloway

    musharraf

    April 1, 2014 at 10:57 pm

  16. And now the bent copper Afiz Khan has been dismissed by the MET Police

    http://crimeandjustice.co.uk/2014/06/13/detective-dismissed-from-the-mps/

    He’ll be getting sentenced in 2 weeks. Ouch!

    Said Omar

    June 13, 2014 at 7:18 pm


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