“Do you want a bullet through your window"
A 30-year-old woman has been jailed for three and a half years for sending malicious emails to Naz Shah MP and perverting the course of justice.
Sundas Alam pleaded guilty to three charges of sending malicious emails and one of perverting justice on the third day of her trial at York Crown Court.
The Recorder of York, Judge Sean Morris, warned that those who threatened MPs will receive heavy sentences. He said:
“As far as malicious communications to a member of parliament are concerned, there has to be an element of deterrence especially in the light of recent tragic events”.
On January 14, 2022, Judge Morris jailed Sundas Alam for sending five “disgraceful, terrifying, and shameful” emails to her MP.
Naz Shah had to flee her home after Sundas made threats including “do you want a bullet through your window or a rifle in your head”. Judge Morris said:
“MPs dedicate their lives to the service of their constituents and their country.
“They should not have to put up with threats. It should not be something that goes with the job.”
He added: “Parliamentarians will be protected by the courts to ensure that others are deterred from their online threats and indeed physical threats.”
He said three people were wrongly arrested by armed police after Sundas Alam spoofed their emails to send the threats.
She let them give evidence before changing her plea to guilty on the third day of her trial.
The judge said she had planned to distress one of the three, her former manager at work.
In personal statements, the victims spoke of the psychological impact of being arrested in the night “as if they were murderers, terrorists or drug dealers.”
They described how they had suffered the loss of their reputation in the community.
The judge made a 10-year restraining order, banning the ex-probation officer from contacting any of their family.
The jury heard Sundas had asked the MP for help after she was sacked by West Yorkshire Community Rehabilitation Company for sending inappropriate messages to her manager.
Naz Shah suggested she go to employment law solicitors. The judge said the advice was “quite correct”.
The jury heard how Sundas Alam had sent the emails on April 3, 2021, four days after she was released under investigation suspected of harassing her former manager.