British preacher to be tried on terror charge

London, Aug 28 (IANS) An alleged radical British preacher Anjem Choudary is to go on trial early next year on the charge that he encouraged support for the Islamic State terrorist group, media reported on Friday.

The 48-year-old was accused of inviting support for the banned terror group on social media between June 29 last year and March 6 this year, contrary to section 12 of the British Terrorism Act 2000, The Guardian reported.

Choudary, of Ilford, east London, was charged along with Mohammed Rahman, 32, of Whitechapel, east London, who was also accused of inviting support for the IS over the same dates.

Both men appeared before Justice Saunders at the Old Bailey via video link from the high security Belmarsh prison for their first crown court hearing. Choudary spoke only to confirm his name.

The public gallery was packed for the hearing. Saunders set a plea and case management hearing for December 11 and a provisional trial date of January 11 at a London court yet to be decided. The trial is scheduled to be conducted by a high court judge and will take three to four weeks.

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