On the run: Somali-born jihadist Mohammed Ahmed Mohamed may have been in possession of his passport when he cut off his tag
A police blunder saw officers wait 48 hours to quiz cab drivers over the disappearance of terror suspect Mohammed Ahmed Mohamed – despite fearing he had used a taxi toescape authorities while dressed in a burka, it has been claimed.
The 27-year-old Somalian, was last seen dressed in a burka leaving the An-Noor Masjid mosque in Acton, West London last Friday.
But it was not until Sunday that Police began questioning some of the many local private car firms in the area.
The suspect, whose alleged offences include unauthorised internet access and illicit meetings, faced 20 charges and had previously spent almost nine months in police custody.
A controller at Churchill Radio Cars in Acton told MailOnline that Police had visited him on Wednesday explaining they were trying to trace the man in the Burka.
Officers had asked him to provide a list of all the jobs they had taken for the Friday afternoon.
And a controller at cab firm West London Cars said officers had visited him on the Sunday and asked for a list of all the jobs done by eight of their drivers who were working on the Friday afternoon.
He told the Daily Mirror: ‘They were very secretive and didn’t say what it was for.’
A Scotland Yard spokesman said the police were unable to comment for ‘operational reasons’.
He said: ‘Extensive inquiries are continuing to trace Mohammed Ahmed Mohamed.’
Yesterday, the Crown Prosecution Service revealed that he had been held for four months at the start of this year, before being bailed in April.
It also said that he had been in custody between October 2011 and February 2012.
A warrant was issued today for Mohamed’s arrest after he failed to attend the Old Bailey for a hearing related to his charges.
The revelation came as it was claimed Mohamed may even have had his passport with him when he escaped the authorities by cutting off his ankle tag.
The details of how easily he got away heaped fresh pressure on the Home Office and police yesterday.
Wanted: CCTV images issued by the Met Police of Mohamed who is wanted by Scotland Yard terror officers
Theresa May was forced to admit inadvertently misleading Parliament when she said on Monday police had seized the fanatic’s travel document. In fact, officers were never able to find one.
The Home Office said Mohamed’s passport had been cancelled – but refused to say if this happened before or after he fled.
Sources revealed how the terror suspect removed the ankle tag, fitted as a condition of his terrorism prevention order (T-Pim), after entering the An-Noor mosque in west London last Friday.
He had arrived at 10am and left at 3.15pm.
The tag sent a ‘tamper-alert’ to its maker, private security firm G4S, which then rang Mohamed to check where he was.
It was only when he did not respond to the call that police and the Home Office were alerted.
But by the time officers arrived he had disappeared.
Admission: Theresa May was forced to admit inadvertently misleading Parliament when she said on Monday police had seized the fanatic’s travel document. In fact, officers were never able to find one
Security officials launched a major manhunt for the jihadist, but fear he may already have fled to Somalia.
On Monday, Mrs May told MPs that police had Mohamed’s British passport.
But yesterday she said Mohamed was not in possession of his British passport when he returned to the UK after being arrested overseas, so ‘there was no passport for the police to seize’.
Keith Vaz, chairman of the Commons Home Affairs Committee, said: ‘When there are only eight people on T-Pims they [the Home Office] ought to know every detail about them.’
A Whitehall official dismissed suggestions Mohamed had fled using the travel document, saying: ‘As far as we know he didn’t have a passport.’