ONE of five Libyan diplomats expelled from the UK is understood to be the country's former consul-general in Scotland.

Abdulrahman Swessi was based in Glasgow while the man convicted of the Lockerbie bombing, Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al Megrahi, was behind bars in Barlinnie and then Greenock prisons.

Mr Swessi is thought to have been working in the Libyan embassy in London since Megrahi returned to Tripoli and is believed to be among five people given until April 6 to leave the country.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office would not confirm the identity of the diplomats yesterday, but reiterated William Hague’s comments to Parliament on Wednesday when he said they were asked to leave because of concerns they could pose a risk to national security.

Professor Robert Black QC, Professor Emeritus of Scots Law at Edinburgh University, questioned the reasoning behind Mr Swessi’s expulsion from the UK and said it was more likely to be because his name is forever linked with the man convicted of the Lockerbie bombing.

He said: “He was never a high policymaker in any way. He was appointed simply to safeguard Megrahi’s interests while Megrahi’s family had their house in Glasgow. He was a social worker, if anything.”

A spokesman for the Foreign Office said: “They are five members of the Libyan embassy, including the military attache, who we believe are the strongest Gaddafi supporters. We believe they have been putting pressure on opposition and student groups in the UK.”