Radical Muslim Cleric Arrested in London
Al-Masri, one of Britain's best known Islamic radicals, has been fighting deportation by the government.
The British government revoked his British citizenship in April 2003, calling him a threat to the country's interests. He has appealed that decision to a special immigration tribunal and a ruling isn't expected until early next year.
He is also wanted in Yemen on charges of orchestrating terrorism there from Britain.
At an immigration hearing last month, a government lawyer said al-Masri had "provided advice and support to terrorist groups" and encouraged others to engage in jihad, "including fighting overseas and engaging in terrorist acts."
Al-Masri, who married a British woman and took British citizenship in 1981, denies any involvement in violence and says he is only a spokesman for political causes.
He was the head preacher at Finsbury Park Mosque in London, which Moussaoui and Reid also attended.
Al-Masri often sparked outrage with his sermons - calling the invasion of Iraq a "war against Islam," claiming the Sept. 11 attacks were a Jewish plot and calling the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster a "punishment from Allah" because Christian, Jewish and Hindu astronauts were aboard.
The mosque was shut down by its trustees after a police anti-terrorist raid in January 2003. The next month al-Masri was banned from preaching there by a government body because his "extreme and political" statements conflicted with the mosque's charitable status.
Since then, the cleric has led Friday prayers on the street outside, under the watch of police.
© 2004 The Associated Press