A British terrorist who tried to join ISIS and whose cousin planned to massacre American airmen in the UK has been released from prison.
Shazib Khan, then 23, was described as “absolutely committed to the jihadist creed” by a judge who sentenced him to eight years in prison in 2016.
In a chilling summary, Judge Judge Edis said Shazib had a genuine intent to do evil and often expressed a wish for martyrdom.
And the Kingston Crown Court judge said Shazib was more dangerous than his cousin Junead Khan, who was also imprisoned at the time.
The judge’s words are more shocking now that Junead was convicted of conspiracy to stab US personnel outside UK airbases.
Shazib Khan, 29, from Luton, left, was described by a judge as “absolutely committed to the jihadist faith.” His cousin, Junead Khan, was jailed after planning a knife attack on US military personnel in Britain
He was sentenced to life in prison, but the sentence was reduced to 20 years’ imprisonment with five years’ probation at the Court of Appeal.
Shazib Khan also had his sentence reduced to seven years and he was eligible for a parole hearing in 2020.
Mail Online can reveal that Shazib, now 29, was released in October 2020 with strict conditions for his movement and who to contact.
The Justice Department confirmed that Shazib is no longer in prison and remains at large in the UK.
The trial of the two men, both from Luton, shed light on the global terror threat and reach of ISIS radicals.
Shazib Khan, then 23, was found guilty in May 2016 of preparing to go to Syria to join ISIS.
He denied the charges, but was convicted of involvement in the preparation of terrorist acts between August 1, 2014 and July 15, 2015.
The court was told that he had used a messaging service called Kik Messenger to contact a number of ISIS fighters in Syria.
Shazib Khan, then 23, was found guilty in May 2016 of preparing to go to Syria to join ISIS. He received an eight-year prison sentence from Kingston Crown Court, but this was reduced by 12 months on appeal
He made it clear that he wanted to travel to Syria to fight.
Over the next few months, he also watched violent jihadist videos, including executions of captured soldiers.
In February 2015, Shazib also purchased several items of military clothing and other equipment online.
Both Shazib and Junead, who are of Bangladeshi background, were arrested on July 14, 2015.
Delivery boy Junead was found guilty of preparing to go to Syria to join ISIS, and was also convicted of plotting to cause a massacre outside a US air base.
Junead used his job at a pharmaceutical company as a cover to scout US Air Force bases in East Anglia.
During these trips he drove close to RAF Mildenhall and RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk; RAF Feltwell in Norfolk; and RAF Alconbury and RAF Molesworth in Cambridgeshire.
These are bases operated by the United States Air Force.
Investigators later found that he had exchanged online messages with an ISIS fighter in Syria who called himself Abu Hussain, describing how he attacked military personnel after faking a road accident.
Junead described how he missed an opportunity to kill American soldiers on his rounds as a delivery boy.
The message read, “When I saw these American soldiers on the road, it looked simple, but I had nothing with me or would have had an accident with them and made them get out of the car.”
His contact replied: ‘That’s what the brother did to Lee Rigby’ – referring to the British soldier who was killed in Woolwich in 2013.
Prosecutors alleged that Hussain was in fact British-born Junaid Hussain, who was killed in a US drone strike in the ISIS stronghold of Raqqa weeks after his link to the planned British attack was discovered.
After Junead was arrested in July 2015, police found photos on his phone of him posing in his bedroom with an ISIS-style black flag, which they later found in the attic.
His computer was also found to contain an al-Qaeda bomb manual and Amazon searches for a large combat knife.
Juneaad was found guilty of planning an act of terrorism in the UK between May and July 2015.
At the sentencing, Mr Justice Edis said: ‘Junead Khan was not far from committing the murder which would be brutally committed in the streets to create terror and terrorist propaganda in this country.
“His offense was so serious that he should be sentenced to life imprisonment.”
Despite the more serious nature of Junead’s sentencing, Judge Edis was scathing about Shazib’s role.
He said Shazib was more intelligent than Junead, thoroughly dishonest and manipulative, and “absolutely devoted to the jihadist faith.”
At the Court of Appeals in 2016, Junead’s life sentence was changed to a 20-year term. He remains in prison and no parole hearing has been listed.
The Parole Board told MailOnline: ‘We can confirm that a panel of the Parole Board has determined Shazib Khan’s release following an oral hearing in October 2020.
“Decisions made by the Parole Board focus solely on the risk an inmate may pose to the public if released and whether that risk is manageable in the community.
“A panel will carefully examine a huge range of evidence, including details of the original crime and any evidence of behavior change, as well as the damage done and the impact the crime has had on the victims.
“Members read and process hundreds of pages of evidence and reports leading up to an oral hearing.
“Witness statements may be made at the hearing, such as probation officers, psychiatrists and psychologists, officials who monitor the offender in prison, and personal statements from victims.
‘It is standard practice that the detainee and witnesses are extensively questioned during the interrogation, which often lasts a whole day or more.
‘Parole reviews are carried out thoroughly and with the utmost care. Protecting the public is our number one priority.”