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Texas synagogue siege: Man charged with selling gun to British hostage-taker Malik Faisal Akram | US News


A Texas man has been charged with selling a gun to a Briton who held four hostages inside a synagogue earlier this month before he was shot dead.

Henry “Michael” Williams has been charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm after being accused of selling a weapon to Malik Faisal Akram just two days before the siege.

Akram, from Blackburn, used the gun when he entered Congregation Beth Israel in Colleysville, Texas, on 15 January.

Malik Faisal Akram

He held the synagogue’s rabbi and three others hostage while demanding the release of an al Qaeda suspect during a 10-hour stand-off with the FBI.

The rabbi then threw a chair at Akram and a SWAT team swarmed the place of worship, shooting the 44-year-old hostage-taker dead.

All of the victims survived the ordeal and were released unharmed.

Read more: British gunman told brother ‘I’m coming home in a body bag’ in chilling final phone call

More on Texas Synagogue Siege

Prosecutors say Williams, who has previously been convicted of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and attempted possession of a controlled substance, sold Akram a semi-automatic pistol.

He initially told investigators that he recalled meeting a man with a British accent but did not remember his name.

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Texas hostage ‘threw chair at gunman’

During a separate interview the following week, authorities said Williams was shown a photo of Akram and this time confirmed that he sold him the weapon at an intersection in south Dallas.

He added that Akram said he intended to use the gun to intimidate someone who owed an outstanding debt, authorities said.

More arrests made after two men released

Earlier on Wednesday, two men were arrested in Manchester as part of the investigation into the attack.

An armed law enforcement vehicle stands by outside the Texas synagogue
All of the victims survived the ordeal and were released unharmed

Both of them remain in custody for questioning, Greater Manchester Police said.

“Officers from Counter Terrorism Policing North West are continuing with their investigation following the events in Texas. They are working closely with and are supporting US law enforcement,” the force added.

Two men arrested in Birmingham and Manchester last week as part of the same probe have been released from custody with no further action.


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