Regulator appoints interim manager to Islamic charity linked to convicted imam

The regulator had opened an inquiry into the already deregistered Fazal Ellahi Charitable Trust after it learned that an imam hosted by the organisation was later convicted of encouraging terrorism

The Charity Commission has appointed an interim manager to a deregistered Islamic charity after an imam it had hosted was convicted of terror offences.

The regulator opened an inquiry into the Fazal Ellahi Charitable Trust earlier this year after the regulator was made aware that an imam hosted by the charity was later convicted of six counts of encouragement of terrorism.

The imam’s convictions related to sermons and classes for children he gave at the mosque run by the charity. He was also convicted of two counts of encouraging support for a proscribed organisation.

The charity, which was set up in 2003 to promote religious education and the Urdu language, was removed from the charities register in 2009 by the regulator after the charity failed to submit its accounts or respond to the commission’s correspondence.

Despite being deregistered, the charity continued to operate a mosque and religious classes for children, the commission said.

The commission said today that on 7 August it appointed Jonathan Burchfield of Stone King LLP as interim manager of the charity. Burchfield has taken over the management and administration of the charity to the exclusion of its trustees.

The inquiry will continue to look at the trustees’ oversight and management of staff, the use of the charity’s premises and its safeguarding procedures, as well as its financial management and whether there had been a failure to comply with the charity’s governing document.

The charity’s bank account was frozen by the commission after it opened its inquiry.

In a statement, Burchfield said: "We appreciate the confidence that the Charity Commission has shown in Stone King by appointing me and our team, led by my partner Tom Murdoch.

"We immediately began our work in August, according to the commission’s brief."

Third Sector could not contact the charity for comment.

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