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Cleric 'wed vulnerable woman to live in UK'
A foreign-born Islamic preacher has been accused of marrying a London woman with the mental age of seven in order to live in the UK.
The bride's family, which is planning to sue the imam for abandoning his wife, has criticised the Home Office for its failure to deport the cleric.
Mohammed Anhar Ali, who is from a village in Bangladesh, was granted indefinite leave to remain after the arranged marriage. The Home Office admitted today there was little it could do to revoke his status.
Mr Ali, 36, married Bilqis Begum, 28, from Poplar, in Bangladesh at an arranged marriage in which he pledged to look after his wife. She is profoundly deaf and mute, has been diagnosed with schizophrenia and has severe learning disabilities. Mr Ali disappeared in September 2004, having secured indefinite leave to remain the previous year.
Ms Begum's father Muhammed Abdul Matin is trying to sue Mr Ali, . . . He claims Mr Ali took his daughter's incapacity benefit before leaving. Incapacity benefit for Ms Begum was being paid into Mr Ali's bank account.