Residents of a quiet suburban street are reeling from the revelation that one of their neighbours had been operating a secret detention and interrogation centre in his semi-detached house. “We had no idea that people were being illegally imprisoned and tortured at number fifty three until the police raided it this morning,” says forty nine year old Cheryl Wiggerbank, who lives four doors down from the house on Trotsky Avenue in Surbiton. “Of course, we did hear the odd noise which might have been a scream. And there was that time a naked man in manacles with a hood over his head came running out of the side gate, pursued by a group black clad men, who beat him to the ground with rubber truncheons, before dragging him back inside. But we didn’t think anything of it – there’s a lot of strange stuff which goes on in suburbia: wife swapping, black leather parties, dominatrixes, that sort of thing.” Other neighbours recalled vehicles arriving at the house in dead of night, their passengers being hurriedly bundled inside by large men dressed in dark clothing. Although the passengers were often shouting and struggling, most of the neighbours simply assumed that they were drunken revellers being delivered back home by mini cab. Police were finally alerted to the strange activities at the house by the local council planning office. “Apparently they’d put up an extension without planning permission,” says Superintendent Colin Cockler, who masterminded the operation. “When they put in an application for retrospective permission they described it as a ‘torture block’ and the plans clearly showed medieval-style racks and an Iron Maiden on the ground floor.” The police’s dawn raid on the premises revealed seven men held captive in the house. All had been subjected to torture over a prolonged period. “There were three men chained up in the cellar, another two in the attic hanging by their wrists from the rafters, one manacled to a radiator in a bedroom and the last one strapped to the kitchen table,” says Cockler. “They were all disorientated and had no idea how long they’d been held there. It could have been days, or even weeks.” Cockler confirmed that three men had been arrested at the house, but that the property’s owner, named as forty two year old George Noblick, is still being sought. “We believe that this individual is the mastermind behind this house of horrors,” says the policeman. “We’re currently making every effort to arrest him.”

Even as the house in Trotsky Avenue yields its secrets, evidence is emerging that it isn’t unique. Several Asian men have come forward with stories of kidnap, incarceration and torture. All claim that they were held in houses in the Home Counties and allege that the authorities refused to take their stories seriously. Twenty eight year old Hamid Albousah, an IT engineer from Bradford, for instance, has claimed that he was kidnapped by a group of masked men in the Yorkshire town and taken to a house in Ruislip. “It was a few months ago. I was coming out of Boots one lunchtime, when these blokes jumped me – they overpowered me and put a bag over my head,” he says. “Then I was bundled into some kind of vehicle – I was on it for hours, the seats were bloody uncomfortable and we kept stopping. I wasn’t the only passenger, though, I could hear loads of other people, they kept picking them up and setting them down. There must be a whole network of these torture centres.” Police refused to comment on reports that on the day of Albousah’s abduction, several people had reported a manacled man with a bag over his head travelling on a Bradford to Ruislip bus, apparently being restrained by two companions. “As long as they have a valid ticket and they don’t distract the driver, it is no business of ours how passengers dress,” explained a spokesperson for the bus operator, rejecting claims that the company was involved in the ‘extraordinary rendition’ of terror suspects. “There were certainly no complaints from other passengers.” Eventually Albousah found himself being held in what appeared to be a Victorian terraced house. “These three blokes in what looked like black leather bondage gear and masks proceeded to interrogate me for three days – the trouble was, they were really crap at it,” he says. “They didn’t seem to have any idea what they were trying to find out – they just kept on asking me if I knew Osama bin Laden’s address. When I told them I didn’t, they seemed confused, and at a loss as what to do.” In the event, his interrogators decided to use torture to make him talk. “They were pretty crap at that too,” he opines. “All their torture techniques seemed to have been learned from S&M films – they kept tying me up in weird positions and putting little clamps on my nipples. When that didn’t work they tried some mild flogging instead.”

Albousah escaped from the house when Jehovah’s Witnesses called selling the Watchtower. “Whilst my captors were distracted, arguing with them about the true age of the Earth, I climbed out of the bathroom window and went over the garden fence,” he explains. “I found myself standing in the middle of a residential street in Ruislip wearing only my underpants.” He was promptly arrested by the police for indecent exposure. “They refused to believe a word I said,” he recalls, indignantly. “They accused me of being part of some gay sadomasochist ring!” George Noblick, meanwhile, has posted a video on the website of the League of British Bastards, an extreme right wing group, attempting to justify what had been going on at his house in Surbiton. “It’s clear the government isn’t going to protect this country from the threat of Muslim extremists, so we’ve decided the only thing to do is take matters into our own hands,” he rants in the grainy webcam footage. “Everybody knows who the terrorists are, but thanks to all this namby pamby human rights nonsense, the authorities are afraid to act against them!” Claiming that police in northern cities like Bradford, with large Muslim populations, were unable to arrest terror suspects for fear of being branded racists, Noblick explained that the League had decided to implement their own policy of ‘extraordinary rendition’. “Seizing and transporting these bastards to the south of England, where our police aren’t so racially sensitive and the lack of any sense of community means you can get away with blue murder so long as you aren’t too noisy and don’t abuse the residents’ parking, is the only solution,” he claims in the video. “We’re confident that the information we obtain from them in our interrogation centres will save hundreds, possibly thousands, of innocent lives when we use it to foil planned terror outrages!” However, when pressed on the issue, the League was somewhat vague as to exactly how many terror plots it had actually foiled through its policy of rendition and interrogation. “Well, one of them did admit that he’d been planning to use some past its sell-by date meat he’d bought from some bloke in the pub in his kebab van,” said a spokesman. “That could have resulted in a mass food poisoning which debilitated half the student population of North East England!”