Reading stabbing suspect ‘was known’ to law enforcement
London – The man held on suspicion of killing three people at a park in Reading was known to MI5, security sources say.
Khairi Saadallah, 25, from the town, was arrested at the scene on Saturday and police say they are not looking for anyone else over the terror incident.
Sources told the BBC he is originally from Libya and came to the attention of MI5 in 2019.
One victim has been named as teacher James Furlong – described by his school as “talented and inspirational”.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he was “appalled and sickened” by the attack in Forbury Gardens on Saturday evening.
Security sources told the BBC the suspect came to the attention of the security services after they received information he had aspirations to travel to Syria – potentially for terrorism.
It is understood the information was further investigated, and no genuine threat or immediate risk was identified.
No case file was opened which would have made him a target for further investigation.
The Holt School in Wokingham paid tribute to Furlong, its head of history and government and politics, in a letter to parents, saying he was a “kind and gentle man” with a “real sense of duty”.
“He truly inspired everyone he taught through his passion for his subject and his dedication,” the secondary school for girls wrote, in a letter signed by co-head teachers Anne Kennedy and Katie Pearce.
“He was determined that our students would develop a critical awareness of global issues and in doing so, become active citizens and have a voice.”
Johnson has promised action following the incident “if there are lessons that we need to learn”.
Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, head of counter-terrorism policing, described it as an “atrocity” and said his “deepest sympathies go to the families who will be mourning loved ones after this horrific act”.
Basu said investigators are not looking for anyone else in connection with the attack. (BBC)