Suspects ‘plotted’ atrocities worse than 7/7’
TERRORIST plotters planned to detonate a series of suicide bombs in an attack that could have been bigger than the 7 July atrocities, a court has heard.
Irfan Naseer, 31, and Irfan Khalid, 27, travelled to Pakistan for terrorist training before returning to the UK in July last year, jurors at Woolwich Crown Court were told yesterday.
In one conversation, Naseer was heard agreeing the 2005 attacks in London had not done enough damage, because there were no nails in the bombs.
The two men, along with Ashik Ali, also 27, are accused of being “central figures” in the alleged extremist plot.
Ali told police in interview that the plan had involved him wearing a suicide vest as well as carrying a gun, the jury heard.
The group also discussed the use of poisons and attaching blades to the side of a vehicle before driving it into a crowd of people, it is claimed.
Prosecutor Brian Altman, QC, told the court: “The police successfully disrupted a plan to commit an act or acts of terrorism on a scale potentially greater than the London bombings in July 2005, had it been allowed to run its course.
“The defendants were proposing to detonate up to eight rucksack bombs in a suicide attack and/or to detonate bombs on timers in crowded areas in order to cause mass deaths and casualties.”
All the men are accused of engaging in preparation of terrorist acts, which they deny.
Naseer is accused of five counts of the offence, Khalid four and Ali three, all between Christmas Day 2010 and 19 September last year.
For Nasser, from Sparkhill, Khalid, from Sparkbrook, and Ali, from Balsall Heath, all in Birmingham, this is alleged to have included planning a bombing campaign, collecting money for terrorism and recruiting others for terrorism.
Nasser and Khalid are also accused of travelling to Pakistan for training in terrorism, and it is alleged that Naseer helped others to travel to the country for the same purpose.
While in Pakistan, prosecutors claim Naseer and Khalid were trained in how to use weapons and how to make bombs and poison, and that they made suicide videos.
After they returned to Britain it is claimed the group then began trying to make bombs, using a flat in Sparkbrook as their base.
In total, 11 men of Pakistani and Bangladeshi origin were arrested over the alleged plot, and one woman.
It is claimed another four of the men were sent to Pakistan for terrorist training: Naweed Ali, 25, and Ishaaq Hussain, Khobaib Hussain and Shahid Khan, all 20.
Prosecutors say Mohammed Rizwan, 33, and Bahader Ali, 29, were “wavering” about whether to get involved in the plot or to go to fight with jihadis abroad.
Rahin Ahmed, 26, was allegedly the group’s financier, and it is claimed that Mujahid Hussain, 21, was involved in fundraising.
The court heard the group had brought a sports injury cold pack, wrongly believing it contained a chemical that could be used in bomb making.
The trial continues today.
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