Luton student jailed over terrorism threats

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A 22-year-old Luton man has been jailed for six years after planning to fight with Daesh in Syria.

Mubashir Jamil of Luton, was sentenced at the Old Bailey today on charges of being engaged in preparation to commit acts of terrorism.

The Old Bailey heard that between November 2015 and April 2016, Jamil sent numerous online messages to people he believed could help him in his endeavours, including a covert police officer.

Jamil told the officer about his dreams of travelling to Syria to fight for Daesh and his intention to get fit ahead of his journey. He bought a punchbag and pull-up bar but told the covert officer he was cautious of drawing attention to his fitness programme and had bought a football to play with “so it’s less suspicious”.

Before deciding to travel to Syria, Jamil considered other options, including carrying out a suicide bomb attack. He talked of wanting to see attacks similar to those in Belgium and Paris. In one message, he wrote: “I am saying if you guys can send me someone quickly, and he fits a explosive [sic] belt on me and tells me how to press, I can go find good targets on the same day and press it.”

But Jamil decided to pursue his plans to fight in Syria instead. On Saturday, April 9, he booked a ticket to fly to Turkey on Saturday, April 30. However, officers arrested him on Wednesday, April 27, before he could travel out.

They seized his iPhone and two laptops from his home; these featured pro-Daesh documents including “How to survive in the West – A mujahid guide” and “The Islamic State 2015”, as well as a copy of his flight tickets. They also seized approximately £1,000 cash – found in his bedroom – under the Police And Criminal Evidence Act.

During today’s hearing, Jamil’s defence barrister said his client would prefer a jail sentence to psychiatric hospital.

Judge Peter Rook QC asked if he had heard correctly and then handed Jamil a “hybrid

order”.

Under the order, Jamil can continue to be treated in a secure hospital until he is well enough to be transferred to prison. He jailed Jamil for six years with a further five years on extended licence.

Commander Dean Haydon, head of the Met’s Counter Terrorism Command, said: “Mubashir Jamil, seemingly inspired by the terrorist atrocities in Belgium and France, was determined to support Daesh by fighting for them in Syria or taking lives here in the UK. Ultimately, he decided to go to Syria and the Met’s Counter Terrorism Command gathered solid evidence of Jamil’s plans before arresting him ahead of his flight date.

“Counter terrorism teams across the UK are carrying out hundreds of investigations but we need communities to work with us to fight terrorism. I urge them to do this by being vigilant and reporting anything suspicious, including if they think someone they know is being radicalised.”

Detective Superintendent Glen Channer, from the Eastern Region Special Operations Unit Counter Terrorism Policing said: “Luton is a fantastic town with great diversity and strong communities; however this case shows how vigilant we must be to identify and weed out those individuals with extreme views of any kind.

“We simply will not tolerate those who spread fear and hate in our communities and will continue to target, arrest and disrupt anyone involved in such criminality. Communities play a crucially important role in defeating terrorism and I would urge people to report any suspicious behaviour via the anti-terrorist hotline.”

Anyone who notices suspicious behaviour or is concerned that someone they know is being radicalised is urged to call the confidential Anti-Terrorist Hotline on 0800 789 321 or seek help and advice at www.preventtragedies.co.uk.