The British man shot dead in Texas after a synagogue siege is believed to have left the UK to live the “simple life” in Pakistan.
Neighbours of Malik Faisal Akram, 44, said today they had not seen him since he said he was emigrating two years ago.
But they said police had arrived at one of his former addresses in Blackburn, Lancs, around four weeks ago, asking questions about him.
A neighbour said: “He said he was taking family to Pakistan where he was going to buy a flock of sheep and live the simple life out there.
“He left the house in a real state and just left. He didn’t take any of his belongings with him.
“We’ve been told he owed around £4,000 in rent.”
He added: “About three or four weeks ago, two detectives knocked at his door asking for Malik.
“They didn’t say what they wanted him for but needed to speak to him.”
Malik was shot after a 10-hour stand-off on Saturday in which four people were held hostage at the Congregation Beth Israel synagogue in Colleyville, 27 miles from Dallas.
He had arrived in America two weeks earlier, where he bought a gun and lived in homeless shelters.
His family have questioned how he was able to enter the US, saying he had a criminal record.
Malik’s brother Gulbar, 43, revealed relatives had been in contact with Malik during the siege, at the police’s request, but could not convince him to surrender.
AFP via Getty Images)
He added: “He’s known to the police. Got a criminal record. How was he allowed to get a visa and acquire a gun?”
Just weeks after the 9/11 attacks in New York, Malik was banned from court buildings in Blackburn after allegedly telling an usher he wished he had died on one of the terror planes that crashed into the World Trade Centre.
In Texas, Malik had held four people hostage during a service that was being streamed on Facebook.
He had a gun and backpacks which he claimed were full of explosives and his British accent could be heard on the live stream.
Officials said Akram had called for the release of Pakistani neuroscientist Aafia Siddiqui, in jail in Texas for terror offences.
She was given an 86-year sentence after being convicted in 2010 of trying to kill US troops in Afghanistan. Islamist militants have frequently demanded her release.
AFP via Getty Images)
Malik was shot dead after the hostages were freed from the synagogue.
In the UK anti-terrorist police have arrested two teenagers in south Manchester in relation to the incident.
The pair, both believed to be under 18, cannot be identified for legal reasons.