Security services are investigating links between Hani al Sibai and his influence on the west London terror network in which Jihadi John - unmasked as Mohammed Emwazi - operated, Sunday Telegraph newspaper reported.
It is claimed that Sibai, a charismatic preacher, had “captivated” a number of young Muslim men who subsequently went abroad to fight jihad.
In a court case last year, he was accused of having “provided material support to al-Qaeda and conspired to commit terrorist acts”, an allegation he denies.
Despite being officially identified as an affiliate of the notorious terror network, al-Sibai, citing his human rights, has thwarted government attempts to deport him for more than 15 years.
Instead, the Egyptian-born cleric lives in a leafy street in fashionable west London in the same neighborhood where Emwazi and his fellow jihadists in the London Boys terror cell hung out.
The London Boys was the name given to a “sleeper cell”, set up by Osama bin Laden, whose members were sent to training camps in Somalia and ordered back to the UK to carry out attacks.
It is not clear what direct contact, if any, Sibai, 54, had with Emwazi but he posts radical material on websites he runs, which are said to be highly influential on young jihadists.
Sibai was a close associate in London of Adel Abdel Bari, another Egyptian-born jihadist and senior Qaeda operative who lived in London and was jailed for 25 years in the US in February for a series of terror plots.
Bari’s son Abdel-Majed Abdel Bary, 25, a one-time rap musician in west London, subsequently traveled to Syria and is thought to be part of Jihadi John’s network inside Daesh.