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Abu Hamza loses last appeal against US extradition

Abu Hamza will be extradited to the US after losing a last-minute appeal in the UK.

Abu hamza extradition blocked british high courtEnlarge
Radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza on April 16, 2004 in London. Hamza was set to be extradited to the US after losing his appeal, but a British high court judge halted the extradition on September 26, 2012, after the cleric lodged a last-minute legal appeal. (Bruno Vincent/AFP/Getty Images)

Radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri will be extradited along with four other defendants after losing his last-ditch appeal at Britain's high court on Friday.

Judges Duncan Ouseley and John Thomas ruled on Friday that Al-Masri could be extradited to the United States, along with Babar Ahmad, Talha Ahsan, Abdel Abdul Bary and Khaled Al Fawaaz, Al Jazeera reported.

The court found that Al-Masri failed to show "new and compelling" reasons not to extradite him. The judges said the prisoners' extradition "may proceed immediately," according to the BBC.

The BBC reported that two civilian US jets were on the tarmac at an air base in eastern England, ready to transport the prisoners.

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The judges said, "It is unacceptable that extradition proceedings should take more than a relatively short time, to be measured in months not years. It is not just to anyone that proceedings such as these should last between 14 and eight years," according to the BBC.

They rejected a plea by Al-Masri's lawyers that he should undergo an MRI brain scan, which would show that he was unfit to plead due to degenerative problems.

Al Jazeera noted that lawyers for Al-Masri said he suffered from depression, chronic sleep deprivation, diabetes and other ailments.

The men will now be flown to ADX Florence, a "supermax" prison in the United States, according to Agence France Presse.

Al-Masri was indicted for setting up an Al Qaeda-style training camp in the state of Oregon, among other charges.

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