This one is pretty much takes the cake, I have to say. I’m not even an anti-government assistance person. In fact, I think it’s often vital to provide such benefits. It’s also vital to monitor these programs for abuse. When they’re being used to fund suicide bombings that kill your own people, that’s obviously a problem that goes far beyond your standard benefit fraud case. Also, we have to take into account the fact that Salman Abedi, the scumbag Manchester bomber, had already been identified as a potential terror threat.
This is something that definitely needs to be looked at in the future.
From The Telegraph…
The Manchester suicide bomber used taxpayer-funded student loans and benefits to bankroll the terror plot, police believe.
Salman Abedi is understood to have received thousands of pounds in state funding in the run up to Monday’s atrocity even while he was overseas receiving bomb-making training.
Police are investigating Abedi’s finances, including how he paid for frequent trips to Libya where he is thought to have been taught to make bombs at a jihadist training camp…
Abedi’s finances are a major ‘theme’ of the police inquiry amid growing alarm over the ease with which jihadists are able to manipulate Britain’s welfare and student loans system to secure financing.
One former detective said jihadists were enrolling on university courses to collect the student loans “often with no intention of turning up”.
Abedi was given at least £7,000 from the taxpayer-funded Student Loans Company after beginning a business administration degree at Salford University in October 2015.
It is thought he received a further £7,000 in the 2016 academic year even though by then he had already dropped out of the course. Salford University declined to say if it had informed the Student Loans Company that Abedi’s funding should have been stopped.
Separately, the Department for Work and Pensions refused to say if Abedi had received any benefits, including housing benefit and income support worth up to £250 a week, during 2015 and 2016. It would only say he was not claiming benefits in the weeks before the attack.
Perhaps there needs to be some kind of extra oversight here, especially since this guy was already flagged. I’m not sure how the logistics of that would be setup, but something needs to happen. Everything possible should be done to prevent government assistance from being used to fund terror attacks.