LONDON – Radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri (search), who is awaiting trial for urging followers to kill non-Muslims, was denied bail by a British judge on Tuesday.
Al-Masri, who faces 16 charges including 10 counts of soliciting the murder of Jews and other non-Muslims, appeared at London's Central Criminal Court by video link from prison.
Judge Peter Beaumont (search) rejected a bail request by al-Masri's lawyers and ordered him detained at Belmarsh high-security jail until his next court hearing on Dec. 21.
British prosecutors charged al-Masri, Britain's highest-profile Islamic radical, on Oct. 19, pre-empting a U.S. bid to extradite him on terrorism-related charges. Under British law the domestic charges, which carry a maximum sentence of life in prison, take precedence over the extradition case.
The Egyptian-born cleric — who has one eye and hooks for hands, which he says were lost fighting Soviet troops in Afghanistan in the 1980s — was arrested in May after U.S. authorities charged him with trying to establish a terrorist training camp in the western state of Oregon, involvement in hostage-taking in Yemen and funding terrorism training in Afghanistan.
The United States plans to resume the extradition case once he is convicted or cleared of the British charges.