18:25, June 27 183 0 theguardian.com

2017-06-27 18:25:02
London Bridge attacker entered UK under false name, inquest told

One of the terrorists who carried out the London Bridge and Borough Market attacks lied about his age and gave a false name in order to get into the UK.

Rachid Redouane, 30, used the alias Rachid Elkhdar and told authorities he was five years younger than he was. It has not been disclosed when he entered Britain.

The details emerged at the opening of inquests into the deaths of Redouane, Khuram Shazad Butt, 27, and Youssef Zaghba, 22, who killed eight people on the night of 3 June.

The inquests initially went unreported because Southwark coroner’s court failed to inform journalists about the session. The hearing was due to begin at 9.30am on Tuesday, but a weekly email listing the cases to be heard was not sent to media until 9.48am. The court later released a recording of the session.

Pete Clifton, editor-in-chief of Press Association, the UK’s main news agency, said receiving notice of a such an important hearing 20 minutes after it was due to start was “deeply unhelpful”.

The coroner’s court is just yards from where the attacks took place earlier this month.

DCI Simon Moring of the Metropolitan police told the court that all three men died after being shot by police officers at Borough Market.

A provisional postmortem gave Butt’s cause of death as “multiple gunshot wounds”.

Senior coroner Dr Andrew Harris said unemployed Butt was born in Jahelum, Pakistan, on 20 April 1990. He was married and living in Barking, east London when he died.

Redouane, also of Barking, was initially identified – through fingerprints held by the immigration service – as Rachid Elkhdar, born 31 July 1991, Moring said.

“However, a statement was taken from his wife who stated he used that name when he entered the country and his real name was Rachid Redouane, date of birth 31 July 1986,” he told the court.

“Subsequent fingerprint comparisons made against national identity documents held in Morocco again confirmed the name Rachid Redouane.”

Moring said the postmortem gave the cause of death as multiple gunshot wounds to the chest and abdomen, but added that the full autopsy would take several months.

Zaghba, who lived in Ilford, was primarily identified by fingerprints from the Moroccan authorities and dental records. The court heard that he was born on 26 January 1995 in Fez, Morocco and was known as an audio technician.

Harris said he was satisfied that all three suspected deaths were unnatural and opened their inquests.

He added that Mark Lucraft QC, the chief coroner, had agreed it was “appropriate for me to suspend my inquiries into all three deaths, which I do pending further inquiries by police and decisions by the chief coroner”.

The Met issued a press release at 6.01pm stating that evidence it had presented to the court was accepted by the coroner.

“The inquest into the deaths of the three men shot dead by police following the terrorist attack at London Bridge and Borough Market has been opened and adjourned at Southwark coroner’s court today (Tuesday, 27 June),” it said. “Their inquests were adjourned to a later date to be set.”