Leytonstone Tube station attacker jailed for life over Isis-inspired stabbing

Muhiddin Mire attempted to behead a random passenger during the attack at a Tube station in December

Siobhan Fenton
Monday 01 August 2016 07:57 BST
Witness films Leytonstone attack

A man who tried to behead a commuter in an Isis-inspired attack at Leytonstone Tube station has been jailed for life.

Muhiddin Mire will serve a minimum of eight and a half years for the attack, which took place on 5 December last year.

The 30-year-old targeted strangers at random in the Tube station while wielding a knife, declaring he was going to "spill blood" for his "Syrian brothers".

He grabbed one passenger and threatened to behead him.

In response, one onlooker shouted "You ain't no Muslim, bruv".

Upon arrest, Mr Mire was found to possess images of Lee Rigby and Isis executioner Jihadi John on his mobile phone. He had first begun viewing Isis propaganda material three years prior to the attack.

The Old Bailey court heard that he has a history of mental illness and psychosis, including a paranoid belief that he was being stalked by MI5 and MI6. He has been sent to Broadmoor high security hospital and may serve the entirety of his sentence in the psychiatric unit, due to concerns for his mental health.

Sentencing him at the Old Bailey, Judge Nicholas Hilliard QC, Recorder of London, said that while he accepted Mire was suffering from paranoid schizophrenia at the time of the offence, he was also of the opinion he had been motivated by events in Syria.

He continued: “In other words, because Muslims were being bombed in Syria, he was going to attack civilians here.

“That was designed to intimidate a section of the public, and it was to advance an extreme cause."

Dr Shaun Bhattacherjee, a consultant psychiatrist treating Mire at Broadmoor Hospital, said he was “clearly mentally ill at the time of the events” and poses a “very severe” risk to the public.

Cannabis use made a “significant” contribution to what was “probably” a case of paranoid schizophrenia, consultant forensic psychiatrist Dr Philip Joseph said.

With additional reporting by PA

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