Nine jailed for planning London terror plot

Last Updated: Friday, February 10, 2012 - 22:19

London: Nine British-Asians of Pakistani and
Bangladeshi-origin have been jailed in the UK over an
al Qaeda-inspired plot to bomb the London Stock Exchange and
to organise a terrorist training camp in Pakistan.

The men, who were convicted last week, were described by
the judge at the Woolwich Crown Court as "Islamic
fundamentalists". They hail from towns in England and Wales
such as Stoke-on-Trent, Cardiff and London.

Usman Khan, 20, one of the nine jailed, was involved in
organising a training camp on his family land in
Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, and to encourage a "significant"
number of British Muslims at attend it.

Justice Wilkie said this was a "serious, long-term
venture in terrorism" that could also have resulted in
atrocities in the UK. All nine men were arrested in December
2010.

He said: "It was envisaged by them all that ultimately
they and the other recruits may return to the UK as trained
and experienced terrorists available to perform terrorist
attacks in this country, on one possibility contemplated in
the context of the return of British troops from Afghanistan."

The nine included one Bangladesh-origin man who had
changed his name before arrest to "Gurukanth Desai", possibly
after the name of the lead character in Bollywood film `Guru`.

Shahjahan 27, was jailed for a minimum term of eight
years and 10 months. Usman Khan and Nazam Hussain, 26, were
ordered to serve at least eight years.

Justice Wilkie said the three were "the more serious
jihadists" and said they should not be released until they
were no longer a threat to the public.

Four others, who all pleaded guilty to engaging in
conduct in preparation for acts of terrorism by planning to
plant a bomb in the toilets of the London Stock Exchange,
included: "Gurukanth Desai", 30, 12 years; Abdul Miah, 25, 16
years, 10 months; Mohammed Chowdhury, 22, 13 years, 8 months;
Shah Rahman, 28, 12 years.

Omar Latif, 28, who admitted attending meetings with the
intention of assisting others to prepare or commit acts of
terrorism, was given 10 years and 4 months.
Mohibur Rahman, 28, was given a five-year sentence after
he admitted to possessing two editions of an al Qaeda magazine
for terrorist purposes.

Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Stuart
Osborne said the counter terrorism operation was "one of the
most significant and complex" of recent years, and involved
1,000 police officers and staff at its height.

He said: "We had a network of highly dangerous men based
in three cities who were working together to plan terrorist
attacks in the UK. Had we not taken action to disrupt this
network, their actions could have resulted in serious
casualties or fatalities."

Four others, who all pleaded guilty to engaging in conduct
in preparation for acts of terrorism by planning to plant a
bomb in the toilets of the London Stock Exchange, included:
"Gurukanth Desai", 30, 12 years; Abdul Miah, 25, 16 years, 10
months; Mohammed Chowdhury, 22, 13 years, 8 months; Shah
Rahman, 28, 12 years.

Omar Latif, 28, who admitted attending meetings with the
intention of assisting others to prepare or commit acts of
terrorism, was given 10 years and 4 months.
Mohibur Rahman, 28, was given a five-year sentence after
he admitted to possessing two editions of an al Qaeda magazine
for terrorist purposes.

Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Stuart
Osborne said the counter terrorism operation was "one of the
most significant and complex" of recent years, and involved
1,000 police officers and staff at its height.

He said: "We had a network of highly dangerous men based
in three cities who were working together to plan terrorist
attacks in the UK. Had we not taken action to disrupt this
network, their actions could have resulted in serious
casualties or fatalities."

PTI



First Published: Friday, February 10, 2012 - 22:19

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