Qatada's burgeoning terror career was incubated directly by MI5. As Richard Norton-Taylor of the Guardian recalls: "Hours before a new anti-terrorism law allowing foreign terrorism suspects to be held without charge or trial, Qatada left his London home. Mysteriously, MI5 and the police could not find him anywhere. Several months later, he was discovered in a council house in Bermondsey, south London and incarcerated in Belmarsh jail."But a Times investigation discovered from allied intelligence sources that it was Britain's very own security service that had helped Qatada escape the clutches of the law. "Al Qaeda cleric exposed as an MI5 double agent" read the headline. "Britain ignored warnings - which began before the September 11 attacks - from half a dozen friendly governments about Abu Qatada's links with terrorist groups and refused to arrest him." MI5 chiefs intended to "use the cleric as a key informer against Islamist militants in Britain."French intelligence officials were particularly - and understandably - annoyed, accusing "MI5 of helping the cleric to abscond." While Qatada was on the run, one intelligence chief in Paris told the Times: "British intelligence is saying they have no idea where he is, but we know where he is and, if we know, I'm quite sure they do." A year later Qatada was found "hiding in a flat not far from Scotland Yard."