Pakistan-born man jailed for terror plot in United Kingdom

Updated: Nov 24, 2017, 15:47 IST | PTI

A 22-year-old Pakistan-born man has been jailed for six years in the UK for preparing acts of terrorism after being arrested in an undercover police operation last year

A 22-year-old Pakistan-born man has been jailed for six years in the UK for preparing acts of terrorism after being arrested in an undercover police operation last year. Mubashir Jamil, a warehouse worker for the online retailer Amazon, had told an undercover police officer he wanted to wear a suicide vest and "press the button", the Old Bailey court in London heard during his trial. He was arrested in April, a few days before he planned to leave for Turkey, after messaging the officer on a mobile app in which he also revealed that he wanted to fight for the Islamic State (ISIS) terror group in Syria.

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"If you or some brother you know can put an explosive belt on me and tell me how to press, as soon as possible for security reasons, I can do something in the UK even tomorrow after I find a good target," he told the undercover officer using the name of Abu Hasan.

Jamil had denied the charge of preparing acts of terror and claimed that he was hearing voices and wanted to go to Syria to be exorcised of the "jinns" that were plaguing him. The court was told that he had suffered bouts of mental illness and the judge ruled that a part of his six-year sentence will be served in a secure hospital.

Jamil was a former A-grade student from Challney High School for Boys in Luton, near London. He became obsessed with the idea of martyrdom after surfing the internet for execution videos and ISIS propaganda, his trial was told.

Jamil, who moved to Luton from Pakistan with his family when he was two-year-old, had planned his trip to Turkey carefully and "deliberately" changed his appearance, shaving off his beard after reading ISIS guidance online about how to be a "secret agent" in a non-Muslim country. Judge Peter Rook said yesterday his crime was only "in part" explained by his mental health disorder and described him as "dangerous". He handed Jamil a "hybrid order", meaning he will continue to be treated in a secure hospital until he is well enough to be transferred to prison.

Jamil will also have to serve a further five years on extended licence, or under police monitoring, on his release. The undercover officer who entrapped Jamil had posed as ISIS handler Abu Hasan to persuade Jamil to send him a copy of his passport, photographs of himself and even a copy of the boarding pass for a flight to Turkey leaving on April 30, 2016.

Jamil was caught red-handed chatting to Hasan online as counter-terrorism officers burst through his bedroom door in Luton on April 27. His online research became more sinister around November 2015, when he trawled the web for slick propaganda videos produced by ISIS.

In March 2016, he was sent an ISIS "application form" by someone using the handle 'abdullah9996' on Telegram, the encrypted messaging app used by the network. The contact led him into the web of the undercover operation planned by the UK's counter-terrorism officers.

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