Monday, April 30, 2007

Verdicts In Fertiliser Bomb Plot Trial

A British terrorist who met two of the 7/7 suicide bombers has been convicted with four others of plotting a series of deadly bomb attacks on targets in the UK.
Omar Khyam, who also boasted of working for the number three in al Qaeda, was found guilty of conspiracy to cause explosions made from chemical fertiliser.
Khyam, 25, of Crawley, West Sussex, had denied the charge at the Old Bailey during a year-long trial.
Another four British men accused of involvement in the plot were also found guilty of conspiracy to cause explosions likely to endanger life.
They are Waheed Mahmood, 35, and Jawad Akbar, 23, from Crawley, West Sussex, Anthony Garcia, 25, of Barkingside, east London, and Salahuddin Amin, 32, of Luton, Bedfordshire.
Shujah Mahmood, 20, and Jawad Akbar, 23, also from Crawley, West Sussex, were found not guilty of conspiring to cause explosions likely to endanger life between January 1, 2003 and March 31, 2004.
Khyam and Garcia were also found guilty of possession of 600kg of ammonium nitrate fertiliser for terrorism, but Hussain was cleared.
Khyam was also found guilty of possession aluminium powder for terrorism, but Shujah Mahmood was found not guilty.
The seven defendants were arrested in March 2004 following the discovery of more than half a ton of chemical fertiliser in storage in west London.
The prosecution alleged they were involved in a plot to bomb targets in Britain, including the Bluewater shopping centre in Kent, and to hit gas and electricity supplies.
David Waters QC said not everyone involved in the plot was before the court.
The terror cell was said to have schemed with Canadian Mohammed Momin Khawaja and American Mohammed Junaid Babar.
It can now be revealed that Mohammed Sidique Khan, the ringleader of the July 7 bombers, was a close associate of Khyam, at a time when he was one of Britain's top terror targets.
The two met each other at least four times in England while Khyam was under surveillance by MI5 in the final stages of his plotting.
At one point they were even recorded by Security Service agents talking about terrorism.
Khyam also met another of the 7/7 suicide gang - Khan's right-hand man, Shehzad Tanweer - while under surveillance by MI5.
Yet despite this, neither Khan or Tanweer were classified as priority targets by the Security Service
The defendants denied there was a plot.
Some said they were only interested in sending money and supplies to fighters in Kashmir and Afghanistan. Others said they were duped.
The jury in the Old Bailey trial had been considering their verdicts since March 16 but did not sit every day. They started their 27th day today following the Easter break.

No comments: