Two Afghan men living in England have been arrested for allegedly plotting to kill a female relative, who lived in another country and who had renounced Islam, the Evening Standard reports.
Mohammed Patman, 53, from Ilford, and Darya Khan Safi, 49, from Coventry, are accused of plotting to kill a 25-year-old female relative who lived in Austria with her husband and worked in Slovakia, where she managed a business, hundreds of miles away. The relationship between the two men is not clear, as of this writing, nor is their relationship to the intended victim. Also unclear is whether or not the woman knew she was the target of an international assassination plot, and whether or not she was the one who brought the matter to the attention of authorities.
Slovakian authorities alerted the British National Crime Agency (NCA) that someone working in their country was facing a threat from the United Kingdom and asked for the cooperation of British law enforcement. At the time, October 2018, the NCA began conducting surveillance on the two men.
Over the next several months, NCA officers subpoenaed the two men's phone and internet records, during which they allegedly discussed the plot to kill the woman. Their plan allegedly included carrying out activities in England, Austria, and Slovakia, according to Yahoo News U.K.
Additionally, authorities witnessed the two men allegedly putting snow tires on their vehicle, as well as darkening the windows, and then using that vehicle to conduct surveillance trips to Austria and Slovakia.This week, NCA officers arrested the pair and took them into custody. In addition to whatever criminal charges they may be facing in the United Kingdom, they are also wanted in Slovakia for the alleged murder plot as well.
NCA senior investigating officer Matthew Perfect said that the cooperation between British and Slovakian authorities in this case highlights the effectiveness of joint work by differing law enforcement agencies throughout Europe.
"Patman and Safi were sought by the Slovakian authorities for the extremely serious offence of preparing to commit first-degree murder," he said.
He also noted that the United Kingdom is a safer place thanks to the work of the NCA.
"Protecting the British public is a core part of the NCA's mission and these are two potentially violent individuals who will no longer pose a threat," he said.
The two men will have a court appearance on Sept. 12. They now face extradition to Slovakia.