Jailed: Man who murdered David Amess will never be released from prison

Sir David Amess. Ali Harbi Ali is due to go on trial at the Old Bailey accused of murdering the veteran Conservative MP

The terrorist from Kentish Town who murdered veteran MP Sir David Amess in a warped retaliation against politicians who voted to bomb Syria has been handed a whole-life prison term - Credit: PA

A terrorist from Kentish Town will never be released from prison after murdering Sir David Amess in a "cold and calculating" attack. 

On Monday - April 11 - jurors at the Old Bailey deliberated for just 18 minutes before finding Ali Harbi Ali guilty of murder and of preparing for terrorist acts.

Mr Justice Sweeney handed the 26-year-old a whole-life sentence at the Old Bailey this morning (April 13).

This means the killer, who pursed his lips briefly in response to the order, will spend the rest of his life behind bars.

Ali murdered the Plaistow-born, Southend West MP during a constituency surgery in Leigh-on-Sea on October 15 last year.

The 26-year-old told the court he had no regrets about the killing, which he said was motivated by the veteran MP voting in favour of air strikes on Syria in 2014 and 2015.

Ali - described in the proceedings as "warped and twisted" - was apprehended after the attack by two police officers armed only with batons and spray.

Jurors at the Old Bailey heard that after the once-ambitious Ali became radicalised in 2014, he considered travelling to Syria to fight before opting to carry out an attack in Britain.

Ali scoped out other political targets including Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, Michael Gove and Finchley and Golders Green MP Mike Freer - whose constituency surgery he visited.

Having settled on attacking Sir David, he made an appointment through the MP’s office by falsely claiming he was moving to the area.

Chilling CCTV captured on October 15 saw Ali travel to Belfairs Methodist Church to carry out his attack.

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Within minutes of meeting the MP, the terrorist pulled out a 12-inch carving knife and stabbed him more than 20 times.

He also threatened to kill the MP’s two female aides and a couple who had arrived for their appointment while wielding the knife.

The London-born terrorist also told unarmed witness Darren King that he wanted to be shot, adding that he would die "a martyr" and "a hero".

In police interview, Ali spoke calmly about his terror plot and admitted allegiance to the so-called Islamic State.

The 26-year-old accepted much of the evidence against him, despite pleading not guilty to the charges.

Father-of-five Sir David was killed five years after Batley and Spen MP Jo Cox was murdered in her constituency.

His death sparked huge outcry from across the political spectrum.

In a statement issued via the Met Police after today's hearing, Sir David's family said they felt “no elation” at Ali's sentence.

"Our amazing husband and father has been taken from us in an appalling and violent manner. Nothing will ever compensate for that.

"We will wake each day and immediately feel our loss. We will struggle through each day for the rest of our lives.

"Our last thought before sleep will be of David. We will forever shed tears for the man we have lost. We shall never get over this tragedy."

Referring to Ali, the family said it was heart-breaking to "know that our husband and father would have greeted the murderer with a smile of friendship and would have been anxious to help".

They described the terrorist's actions as "beyond evil".

Matt Jukes, the Met's assistant commissioner and head of counter terrorism policing, added: “Sir David’s family and loved ones have shown tremendous courage since his murder.

“The conclusion of the trial ends this chapter but going forward, they and Sir David will forever remain in our thoughts."

AC Jukes described Ali as a "cold, calculated and dangerous individual", who "callously and senselessly murdered" Sir David.