A man arrested in Birmingham terror raids told how police grilled him over a drawing by his five-year-old daughter – but failed to mention an alleged kidnapping plot.
Father-of-two Abu Bakr, aged 28, was one of nine men seized by police in a string of dramatic dawn raids in Birmingham eight days ago.
Yesterday he was released, along with another man, without charge after seven days in custody at Chace Avenue police station in Coventry.
Mr Bakr, a qualified teacher, worked in an Islamic bookshop called Maktabah on Stratford Road, close to his home in Sparkhill, both of which were raided.
He also claimed he was held to distract attention from the cash-for-honours inquiry.
Speaking on GMTV, Mr Bakr said: "I personally believe it was to do with the incident around Tony Blair. With Lord Levy being arrested, and Tony Blair being questioned, to take attention away from that, away from Blair, this was leaked to the press, that there’s some big plot."
Mr Bakr, who was born in Britain and got married in Pakistan, said: "I came back with my wife here, I was educated here, got my degree here, got my Masters here, going to do my Ph.D. here."
He described his "bewilderment" when he was arrested.
"I was sleeping at the time, at four o’clock in the morning, I heard my wife scream, and then I saw the light come on, and police officers rushed into the room.
"I was then escorted downstairs, then an officer appeared and said, ‘you are getting arrested for suspicion of instigating or preparing an act of terrorism’.
"It’s just so draconian that somebody can be picked up, not told why they are being arrested, then detained for seven days, and you can be surprised that not once in seven days of detention, not once was an allegation made against me."
There were four sessions of questioning about "random stuff" found at his house, such as "scribbles my kids had written in a diary" and "CDs and blank CDs".
Mr Bakr told last night’s Newsnight, on BBC2, that Britain was a "police state for Muslims".
He said: "It’s a police state for Muslims, it’s not a police state for everyone else, because these terror laws are designed specifically for Muslims.
"That’s quite an open fact because the people who have been arrested under terrorism laws, the groups for example that have been banned under the terrorism laws, the people that have been affected by terrorism legislation, have been Muslims.
"So we are feeling the brunt of it all. We are the ones that are being locked up, detained, and then told go back to our lives."
His brother Razwan Faraz, aged 27, said his family was relieved Mr Bakr had been returned, but demanded answers.
"The police had an entire week questioning him and there was not a single mention of this kidnap plot or terrorist activities, not even a whiff," he said. "They showed him a piece of paper with his daughter's scribble on it and asked if it was code for something."