The waiting list for social housing in Tower Hamlets is so long that the chances of a young single man with no dependents obtaining a social tenancy are zero. It just does not happen.
But for some it does.
London Bridge attacker
Ask Mohammed Moksudur Choudhury, Tower Hamlets resident and the leader of the al-Qaeda inspired terrorists that planned to bomb the London Stock Exchange in 2010.
One of his co-conspirators carried out the London Bridge attack last Friday.
Choudhury, a single 20-year-old man with no dependents and no known special circumstances, was allocated a one-bedroom Tower Hamlets social housing property ahead of 20,000 other people.
Cllr. Peter Golds (Conservative, Island Gardens) has been trying to find out how since Choudhury was arrested in December 2010 at his flat in Stanliff House, Cassilis Road on the Isle of Dogs.
At the time Stanliff House was owned by Toynbee Housing Association which is now part of One Housing Group.
Nine years later Tower Hamlets Council is still unable to provide Cllr. Golds with an explanation so he is asking again.
Last week’s brutal murder of Saskia Jones and Jack Merritt at London Bridge was carried out by Usman Khan. He was jailed with eight others, including Mohammed Moksudur Choudhury, in 2012 after they were all convicted of the London Stock Exchange bomb plot.
Ringleader Mohammed Moksudur Choudhury, was sentenced to a prison term of 18-and-a-half years. It is understood that he is still in prison.
Update 4 December 2019: The Times reveals that Choudhury has breached his bail conditions twice. [£] That is the only reason he is not free.
Choudhury worshipped at nearby Docklands Community Organisation Mosque at 111-113 Mellish St, Isle of Dogs.
The gang of extremists were inspired by al-Qaeda and had links to al-Muhajiroun in the UK, a radical group led by hate-preacher Anjem Choudary.
Speaking to Ted Jeory, then of the Sunday Express, in 2011 Conservative councillor Peter Golds raised this question about Stanliff House: “This property is in one of the most sought-after developments of the borough. If he is the legal tenant, how did he rise up the housing list when I am told many applicants are expected to sleep in living rooms or share rooms with siblings of a different gender?”
Ted Jeory’s story stated that Tower Hamlets Borough Council declined to comment on the matter, but the housing association said that when the authority had allocated properties it had merely checked a prospective tenant’s ability to pay the rent.
Letter from Cllr. Peter Golds to Will Tuckley, CEO, LBTH
In January 2011 I raised how Mohammed Chowdhury, a single 20 year old with no dependent children, was allocated a social tenancy in the Toynbee Homes (now One Housing) development, at Stanliff House, Cassilis Road, E14.
Shortly before he had been arrested in a police raid and following this I visited the block and established his name, the number of the flat and information regarding him.
I sought information at the time from the council as to how this allocation had taken place, and received no relevant answer to my question.
In 2012 he pleaded guilty to terrorism offences, including planning to set off a bomb in a lavatory at the London Stock Exchange. he was regarded, despite his youth, as the leader of the cell, which included the man shot dead last weekend on London Bridge.
This problem of social housing allocations simply is not going to go away.
I assume that records continue to exist and therefore it is possible, even at this stage, to establish how he was allocated this extremely desirable property.
Cllr Peter Golds”
Tower Hamlets Council, Tower Hamlets Homes and One Housing Group have been approached for comment.
Update 11 December 2019
A spokesperson for Tower Hamlets Council said:
“Mohammed Moksudur Choudhury was a social housing tenant in Tower Hamlets from 2007. His application was considered in line with the allocations policy in place at the time and an offer was made in the expected timeframe.
“The personal circumstances of each individual determine where they are placed on the housing register. In this case there were a number of factors that made the applicant a higher priority for rehousing. It would be inappropriate for us to share the details of those publicly.
“Based on the information available to us, we are satisfied that entirely proper processes were followed in this case. Any suggestion that they were not would be unfounded.”
Related Internet Links
- Mystery of terror plot suspect’s luxury flat Sunday Express 2 Jan 2011
- Six of London Bridge terrorist Usman Khan’s fellow Stock Exhange bomb plotters have also been freed from prison since 2012 – 1 December 2019 Daily Mail
- Terrorists admit London bomb plot The Sun 1 Feb 2012
- London Stock Exchange bomb plot admitted by four men BBC 1 February 2012
- Terror suspects in custody over ‘pre-Christmas plot’ Daily Express 23 Dec 2010
- Gateway to Terror Anjem Choudary and the al-Muhajiroun network – Hope Not Hate