Trial of UK terrorist "Osama bin London" who ran training camps across UK
October 11, 2007
'Osama bin London' ran training camps across Britain, terror trial told
Metropolitan Police/PA Wire
Atilla AhmetLucy Bannerman From The Times (London) October 11, 2007 http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/crime/article2630899.ece
Two Islamic preachers recruited, groomed and corrupted young Muslims, taking them to camps across Britain where they trained with members of the failed July 21, 2005, bomb plot, a court was told yesterday.
Attila Ahmet, the ringleader of the alleged group, admitted encouraging others to commit murder, Woolwich Crown Court was told. Mohammed Hamid, his alleged co-conspirator, who allegedly told police his name was "Osama bin London", is accused of overseeing a two-year radicalisation programme to prepare a London-based network of Muslim youths for jihad.
Mr Hamid, 50, who was said to have referred to the 52 deaths in the July 7 terrorist attacks as "not even breakfast for me", appeared with four others. He also allegedly spoke of "six or seven atrocities" before the London 2012 Olympics and was said to praise "the magnificent" September 11 hijackers.
Among those who attended the weekend training camps and Friday- night meetings at the East London home of Mr Hamid were the four men convicted of the failed July 21 plot, which aimed to kill passengers on Tube and bus networks in London.
The court was told that the defendants joined two of the plotters, Ramzi Mohammed and Hussein Osman, on a paintballing trip to Tonbridge, Kent, weeks before the terror cell tried to blow up passengers at Warren Street, Oval, Shepherds Bush and Shoreditch.
David Farrell, QC, for the prosecution, said: "Hamid and Ahmet used the meetings as a grooming mechanism for disaffected Muslim men, slowly and sometimes subtly, preparing them and radicalising them for jihad and encouraging them to murder non-believers." The prosecution claimed that a recording, secretly made by the police, shows Mr Hamid clearly encouraging murder. In one conversation the preacher is allegedly heard telling an unnamed associate: "We know you have the bottle. You know what happened on the Tube? Four people got shaheed [martyrdom]. How many people did it take out?"
The man replies: "Fifty-two."
Mr Hamid allegedly says: "Fifty-two. That's not even breakfast for me."
Mr Hamid, of Clapton, London, Mousa Brown, 41, of Walthamstow, East London, Kibley da Costa, 24, of West Norwood, southeast London, Mohammed al-Figari, 42, of Tottenham, North London, and Kader Ahmed, 20, of Plaistow, East London, deny a number of terrorism charges.
Ahmet, 43, the alleged right-hand man of Mr Hamid and leader of their "inner circle", pleaded guilty to three counts of soliciting murder.
They are the first people to be brought to trial under the Terrorism Act 2006, which makes it a criminal offence to glorify terrorism or to receive terrorist training.
The prosecution alleges that Mr Hamid, with Ahmet as his accomplice, groomed and corrupted young men whom he met at his stall in Marble Arch, West London.
Mr Farrell told the jury that the preacher, who used the alias Al Quran, would invite some of those he met to his home, later taking them to training camps. Surveillance footage taken by the police allegedly shows them practising firing imaginary weapons with sticks, learning to "leopard- crawl" and pole-vaulting over streams. Their behaviour at the Lake District camp, the court heard, led the farmer who owned the land to nickname his regular visitors as "my Taleban".
Mr Farrell said: "A number of young men who attended camps organised by Hamid were involved in attempts to kill and seriously injure passengers on the London transport network on July 21, 2005."
Mobile phone records allegedly show that Mr Hamid was in regular contact with the July 21 plotters, texting them the day before their rucksack bombs failed to detonate. The jury was told that there was no evidence connecting the men to the terrorist attacks on July 7, 2005.
The trial continues.
Mohammed Hamid, 50, of Clapton, East London, is accused of providing weapons and terrorist training between April and March 2006. He is charged with soliciting murder and possessing terrorist documents.
Mousa Brown, 41, of Walthamstow, East London, is also accused of providing weapons training between April 2004 and March 2006.
Kibley da Costa, 24, of West Norwood, southeast London, is accused of providing terrorist training and attending terrorist training camps
Mohammed Al-Figari, 42, of Tottenham, North London, is accused of attending terrorist training camps.
Kader Ahmed, 20, of Plaistow, East London, is accused of attending terrorist training camps.
Man admits encouraging terror attacks Staff and agencies
Mr Hamid, 50, of Clapton, East London; Mousa Brown, 41, of Walthamstow, east London; Kibley da Costa, 24, of West Norwood, south-east London; Mohammed Al-Figari, 42, of Tottenham, north London; and Kader Ahmed, 20, of Plaistow, east London, deny a number of terrorism charges. The court heard that the alleged terrorist training was carried out under the guise of camping and paint-balling trips in the UK. Mr Farrell said the trips were designed to "foster within the participants that they were training for 'Jihad' against the 'Kuffir', or non-believers". He added: "To put it another way, their statements and actions resulted in the encouragement, direct and indirect, of the commission of acts of terrorism. "Indeed, as you will hear, a number of young men who attended camps organised by Hamid were in fact involved in attempts to kill and seriously injure passengers on the London transport network on July 2 2005."
The jury was told that Ahmet attend meetings at Mr Hamid's home, where "aggressive unlawful violence" was preached in the name of Islam. Mr Farrell said: "At meetings held at Hamid's home address and elsewhere, the methods of Hamid and Ahmet involved the encouragement of the use of unlawful violence in the name of Islam." The court heard that some of those involved in the failed July 21 bombings attended the camps and paint-balling trips, as well as meetings at Hamid's home. The jury was shown evidence of phone contact between Mr Hamid and the four convicted bombers - Ibrahim, Hussein Osman, Ramzi Mohammed and Yassin Omar. Mr Farrell said: "The prosecution do not suggest that Mr Hamid's role in seeking to train and influence those who took part in 21/7 was the only training or influence they received. "The prosecution's case is that Hamid, assisted by Ahmet, was a recruiter, groomer and corrupter of young Muslims. "His purpose was to convert such men to his own fanatical and extreme beliefs and, having given them such a foundation, thereby enabling them to move on to join others in the pursuit of 'Jihad' by acts of terrorism."
The court heard that Mr Hamid's east London home was bugged by police from September 2005 onwards. Officers were able to listen to meetings held each Friday by Hamid, Ahmet and others when discussions took place. In April 2006, an undercover police officer approached Mr Hamid at his Oxford Street stall and was invited to the Islamic meetings. He was subsequently invited to camping weekends in the New Forest and to an Islamic school in East Sussex.
Speaking about the recordings, Mr Farrell said: "What you'll hear is not mere religious discussion and teaching, but the preaching of aggressive, unlawful violence - terrorism in the name of Islam. "Indeed Hamid's partner in terrorist conversions, Atilla Ahmet, has admitted that that was his intention when he addressed meetings at Hamid's house." Mr Farrell said when the defendants were arrested in September 2006 their homes were searched and a "great deal" of extremist material was seized, including CDs and DVDs containing recordings of murders, beheadings and suicide bombings.
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