Men convicted of trying to detonate explosives on London transport system.
A jury on Monday found Muktar Said Ibrahim, 29; Yassin Omar, 26; Ramzi Mohammed, 25, and Hussain Osman, 28, guilty of conspiracy to murder in an al-Qaeda-inspired plot to detonate explosives-filled knapsacks on three subway trains and a bus.
Prosecutors said the attacks were a deliberate mirror image of the July 7 transit bombings, though the planning started long before.
Judge Adrian Fulford dismissed the jury on Tuesday after they said they could not agree on a verdict for Asiedu and Yahya.
All six defendants denied the charges, saying the devices were duds and their actions a protest against the Iraq war. But police and prosecutors said scientific tests proved the bombs were all viable. They do not know why they did not work.
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Peter Clarke, the Metropolitan Police anti-terrorism chief, said the four convicted plotters “set out to replicate the horrors that had been inflicted on Londoners on July 7, 2005.”
“The convictions show that the jury rejected the blatant, indeed ridiculous, lies told by these defendants in a futile attempt to escape justice,” he said.
|Suicide bombers killed 52 commuters in
London on July 7,2005 [AP]
During the six-month trial, prosecutors said Asiedu lost his nerve and abandoned his device in a London park. The device was shown to the jury as evidence during the trial.
Yahya left Britain for Ethiopia several weeks before the attacks.
During the trial, Asiedu turned on the others and claimed Ibrahim, the gang’s self-proclaimed leader, had wanted the attacks “to be bigger and better” than the July 7 bombs.
The four convicted men attempted to detonate explosives-laden backpacks on three subway trains and a bus, as in the July 7, 2005, attacks. The devices – made from a volatile mix of hydrogen peroxide and flour – failed to explode, and no one was injured.
Unlike three of the four July 7 bombers, who were British-born, those in the July 21 plot had come to Britain as youths from places like Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia. Some had become British citizens, while others had refugee status.