Posted on April 15, 2013

Terrorists Plotted to Blow up TA Centre with a Toy Car

Simon Hughes, The Sun, April 15, 2013

Four British Muslim terrorists are facing years in jail for plotting to attack a Territorial Army base using an explosives-packed toy car.

The deadly plaything was to be operated by remote control and guided into the base beneath its security gates.

One theory is that once inside, it was to be detonated under a parked car.

Two of the fanatics had been for terror training to camps in Pakistan.

At one point the gang aimed to mount a suicide bombing campaign against British and United States troops serving in neighbouring Afghanistan.

But they switched their intentions back to targets in the UK.

Today the four, all from Luton, Beds admitted preparing and encouraging acts of terror when they appeared in the dock at London’s top security Woolwich Crown Court.

The TA Centre, which they targeted was in Marsh Road, Luton – not far from their addresses.

Cell leader Zahid Iqbal, 31, together with pal Mohammed Sharfaraz Ahmed, 25, recruited Syed Hussain, 22, and 24 year old Umar Arshad.

Prosecutor Max Hill told the court that Iqbal had been tailed carrying out reconnaissance at the TA base.

He was recorded telling Ahmed in April 2011: “At the bottom of the gate there’s quite a big gap.

“If you have a little toy car, it drives underneath one of their vehicles or something.”

Iqbal had researched remote controlled detonators, said Mr Hill.

He was further overheard saying: “I can choose the exact moment and then not only that, to attach it like a remote control car ‘cause I saw that as well.

“Obviously the test run is going to be a bit hot. And you need to be careful because you don’t want to get caught.”

The gang was arrested before they could strike. Police moved in four days before the tenth anniversary of 9/11 attacks.

Mr Hill said: “The evidence indicates that Mr Ahmed was actively engaged in the radicalisation and recruitment of others for extremist purposes, who he then referred to Iqbal so that the latter could facilitate their travel overseas for extremist purposes.”

A lengthy investigation established that they planned to attack not just the TA centre but a number of targets.

The far-right English Defence League, the Arnedale Shopping Centre in Luton, Beds and “an inside job on MI5″ were among other targets discussed.

There was even talk of a strike against the United States Airforce.

The investigation also established that the cell had been in contact with an al-Qaeda commander in Pakistan.

They were in possession of DIY terror guides, including 21 Techniques of Silent Killing, 44 Ways to Support Jihad and The Explosives Course Two.

Copies of the banned online terror magazine Inspire were seized from their homes.

The hearing was adjourned until midday tomorrow when mitigation for the men will be heard before they are sentenced.