Khalid Masood should have been closely monitored by security services, says Ferguson
Harry Ferguson, an expert in surveillance measures when he served with M16, says many aspects of Masood’s past and his behaviour should have sent alarm bells ringing at MI5, the domestic security service, and at MI6.
Masood’s history of violent crime, radicalisation in prison and years working in Saudi Arabia should have put him high on a watch list.
Mr Ferguson said: “If you look at terrorists they do not go from leading blameless lives to killing people. They often have a history of petty crime and then violent crime. Then you put in the fact he was radicalised in prison and you have to put him near the top of the list.”
Masood's history of violent crime and radicalisation should have put him high on the watch list
Looking at his profile I am surprised he was not much higher up the list
He added: “It was said there had been some historical interest in him some time ago. Looking at his profile I am surprised he was not much higher up the list. They should have been worried about him.
“Why weren’t they paying him closer attention? I think you can mark down this as one where he slipped through.
Ferguson said many aspects of Masood's past should have sent alarm bells
“I think there is something wrong with the algorithms they are using to narrow the list.”
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He added: “However, it is easy to play this from the armchair and I do not know all the facts.”
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He said Masood way have believed he was under surveillance
Mr Ferguson also said Masood may have believed he was under surveillance as after hiring a car he took the trouble to spend some time at a hotel in Brighton before the attack.
“Going to Brighton would have given him the opportunity to see if he was under surveillance. If he thinks there is a good chance he has clean coat tails, then he can continue,” he said.