Two Afghan men who allegedly plotted to kidnap and murder a woman who renounced Islam have been arrested in the UK ahead of their planned extradition.
Mohammed Patman, 54, and Darya Khan Safi, 49, are accused of tracking the woman after she moved to work in Slovakia with her husband with a view to assassinating her.
They were arrested in London and Coventry yesterday after an investigation by the National Crime Agency, often called ‘Britain’s FBI’.
A spokesman for the NCA said: ‘The pair were wanted by the Slovakian authorities for conspiring to murder the 25-year-old woman, who was living in Austria and working in Slovakia at a company she ran with her husband.
‘Armed Operations Unit officers undertook surveillance on the two men as they prepared to make multiple trips to both Austria and Slovakia where, investigators believe, they carried out their own surveillance on the victim.
‘They were seen blacking out the windows and swapping the tyres for winter tyres on a vehicle they subsequently used to drive to both countries.
‘Phone and internet records for the pair were obtained which officers allege show the men discussing the potential murder plot including planning of events both at home and abroad.’
The two men are in custody in London and will appear in at Westminster Magistrates Court next Thursday, where the extradition Slovakia case will be heard.
NCA Senior Investigating Officer, Matthew Perfect, said this morning: ‘Patman and Safi were sought by the Slovakian authorities for the extremely serious offence of preparing to commit first degree murder.
‘Protecting the British public is a core part of the NCA’s mission and these are two potentially violent individuals who will no longer pose a threat.
‘They were arrested as a result of some excellent joint working between the NCA and our partners in Slovakia and throughout Europe.
‘Such strong international cooperation is key in allowing us and our partners to pursue the most dangerous criminals across borders.’