The terrorist who led the Paris terror attacks in November visited to the UK on a fake passport last year, according to reports.

 

It is claimed that Abdelhamid Abaaoud arrived in Kent on a false passport before travelling to London.

 

A senior source close to the investigation into the Paris attacks reportedly told The Sun newspaper that Mr Abaaoud had visited the UK but that they did not know why.

 

The Belgian national is thought to have been the ringleader of the attacks, with 10 other armed terrorists working with him.

 

He was killed at a police siege in the Paris suburb or Sant-Danis days after the attacks after officers followed a taxi to an address.

 

Seven of the attackers are believed to have been killed during the operation, which lasted six hours.

 

Mr Abaaoud, who is of Moroccan descent, grew up in the Brussels neighbourhood of Molenbeek, which is blighted by high unemployment and has a large migrant population.

 

He had been implicated in previous foiled attacks in France and had been sentenced to 20 years in prison in absentia, according to French interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve.

 

His whereabouts in the run-up to the attacks were a source of confusion to intelligence agencies, however. He was stated by Isis to have been in Syria.

 

In an interview published in Isis’s English-language magazine Dabiq in February, Mr Abaaoud said he had secretly returned to Belgium to set up a “safe house” from which to plan attacks.

 

“The intelligence knew me from before as I had been previously imprisoned by them,” he said, boasting that he had still managed to slip away after the Verviers raid,” he said, according to a translation by the BBC.

 

“I was even stopped by an officer who contemplated me so as to compare me to the picture, but he let me go, as he did not see the resemblance! This was nothing but a gift from Allah.”

 

The fighter often went by Umar al-Baljiki, an alias. As a child he attended one of Belgium’s top secondary schools, Saint-Pierre d’Uccle, but dropped out.

 

Around 130 people were killed in the series of gun and bomb attacks around Paris.

 

Independent

 

 

 

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