Gang accused of IS-inspired London terror attack plot

The Parachute Regiment Territorial Army Barracks in White City, London, was alleged to be identified as a possible target. Picture: PA

The Parachute Regiment Territorial Army Barracks in White City, London, was alleged to be identified as a possible target. Picture: PA

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A gang of British extremists plotted to kill soldiers, police officers and even civilians on the streets of London in a series of Islamic State-inspired drive-by shootings on a moped, a court heard.

The young men had got their hands on a gun and ammunition and were discussing buying an untraceable scooter before three of them were arrested in September 2014, jurors heard.

The evidence points to this being a plot to kill, a plot to execute a policeman or a soldier or as I say even an ordinary member of the public

Prosecutor Brian Altman

The ring-leader, Tarik Hassane, then returned to London from abroad to carry on as a “lone wolf terrorist” without his friends, the Old Bailey heard.

Using Google Streetview he allegedly identified Shepherd’s Bush police station and the Parachute Regiment Territorial Army Barracks at White City as possible targets before he too was picked up.

Nyall Hamlett, 25, Nathan Cuffy, 26, Suhaib Majeed, 21, and Hassane, 22, all from west London, deny conspiracy to murder and preparation of terrorist acts.

Some of them are also variously charged with firearms offences.

Prosecutor Brian Altman QC told their trial that it was no martyrdom mission – they had an escape plan which suggested more than one killing was afoot.

He said: “The evidence points to this being a plot to kill, a plot to execute a policeman or a soldier or as I say even an ordinary member of the public, in one or more assassinations either involving a drive-by shooting or a shooting on foot and then a speedy escape by moped.”

The defendants were allegedly influenced by events in Syria and Iraq and the rise of Islamic State of Levant which in June of that year had renamed itself Islamic State and pronounced itself a caliphate.

Hassane had pledged his allegiance to IS and the plot received “important direct and authoritative encouragement” in September 2014 in the form of a speech on YouTube from the IS official spokesman, the Old Bailey heard.

In it, Abu Muhammad al-Adnani al-Shami issued a fatwa to kill disbelievers in the West.

Cuffy, Majeed and Hamlett were arrested in September 2014 before Hassane returned to Britain from Sudan where he was studying medicine. They had already acquired a self-loading pistol, a magazine with ammunition and a silencer and Hassane and Majeed had discussed buying a £2,000 moped, as well as finding a garage Mr Altman said.

The trial continues.

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