Early parole review for El Al bomber

Nezar Hindawi planted a bomb in his pregnant fiancee's hand luggage

Nezar Hindawi planted a bomb in his pregnant fiancee's hand luggage

High Court judges have said they will review whether a terrorist jailed for 45 years for trying to blow up an Israeli plane could be released early.

Nezar Hindawi was jailed in 1986 after he was convicted of attempting to blow up a Tel Aviv-bound El Al airliner, carrying almost 400 people. He was found to have planted a bomb in his pregnant fiancee's hand luggage as she was about to board the flight.

The conditions of his sentence meant that he has been eligible for early release on licence since 2001, but only if the courts assessed that he was not a danger to the public.

In 2009, the then Home Secretary, Alan Johnson, rejected a Parole Board recommendation to free Hindawi.

However a judge has now said it is "arguable" that Mr Johnson's reasoning was flawed and that he had failed adequately to give reasons for his conclusion.

The judge granted leave for the case to be determined in a full judicial review hearing at the High Court.

According to his lawyer, Hindawi is a reduced risk because he has renounced terrorism and could not have kept in contact with terrorist networks while behind bars.

Whether or not he is paroled early, Hindawi can expect automatic release in 2016, after which he will be deported to Jordan.

Last updated: 9:57am, June 15 2010