Taha Hussain: Friend of London Bridge terror attack ringleader jailed for four and a half years

Young Isis fanatic guilty of seven charges of disseminating terror documents on YouTube, WhatsApp and Telegram

Samuel Osborne
Thursday 21 September 2017 11:36
Security sources said that Hussain not been arrested before the attacks, it is ‘perfectly conceivable’ that he would have participated
Security sources said that Hussain not been arrested before the attacks, it is ‘perfectly conceivable’ that he would have participated

A young Isis fanatic who filmed himself mocking “baby butchers of the Muslims” as he drove past a British Army barracks has been jailed for four and a half years.

He was a friend of Khuram Butt, the ringleader of the London Bridge terror attack. Now, he has been convicted of seven counts of disseminating terror documents via social media.

Taha Hussain was 19 when he began sharing videos and audio files on social media attempting to justify the Charlie Hebdo and Paris attacks, as well as offering advice to those contemplating going to Syria, Kingston Crown Court heard during sentencing.

In 2015, a night after the Paris terror attacks, Hussain filmed himself driving past Windsor Castle and Victoria Barracks, home of the Coldstream Guards, shouting “Allahu akhbar” and “burn in hell”.

In June last year, Hussain also made a drive-by video around the area of Cavalry Barracks in Hounslow, where the 1st Battalion Irish Guards are based. In a hate-filled commentary, he was allegedly heard to say: “We are outside the British Barracks today, as you can see: the baby butchers of the Muslims.”

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At sentencing, Judge Paul Dodgson described some of the evidence as “chilling”, particularly in light of recent terrorism in the UK.

He said: “The Windsor videos illustrated quite graphically what his state of mind was at the time.”

Security sources told Sky News that had Hussain not been arrested before the London Bridge attack, it is “perfectly conceivable he'd have gone on to play a part in that attack”.

The trial at the Old Bailey heard that he had attended Islamic “road shows” and became increasingly extreme in the two years before his arrest in August last year.

One document shared by Hussain included an article which offered advice to would-be terrorists on how to prepare, get past airport security, conceal their intentions from their parents – as the defendant had done – and how to behave on arriving in Syria.

Another file told fighters who could not travel abroad to “kill the kuffar [unbeliever] in their own country”.

It went into detail about who should be attacked – such as public officials – and how to kill them efficiently with a knife or a basic explosive device, the court heard.

Hussain was found guilty in July of seven charges of disseminating terror documents on YouTube, WhatsApp and Telegram apps.

At sentencing, Judge Dodgson said: “More chillingly in light of recent events, there is a chapter containing advice for those who could not go to Syria, or ‘Sham’ as it is described.

“The advice includes waiting a few months to try again, stealing from the ‘kuffar’, and most pertinently to the events that we have endured this year, killing local kuffar in their own land.”

The judge read an extract from the chapter which said “a kitchen knife” would be sufficient “to send a kuffar to the hereafter”, adding that a petrol bomb would be “easy” to make and deploy.

The jury rejected the defence Hussain did not understand the content, or that he did not look at the videos he was sharing.

The judge added: “I accept that your immaturity, and joining a group that you believed gave you a purpose, were major factors in becoming involved in these offences.

“You say that you have now learnt to respect others and to respect authority, and have expressed a willingness to embark upon a de-radicalisation programme whilst remaining within the Islamic faith.

“You have severed contact with your past associates and appear committed to abandoning the radical path.

“Whilst I can hope that these sentiments are genuine, I cannot ignore the fact that it was only two months ago that you were contesting these matters, and that calls into question whether the remorse is genuine.”

Additional reporting by Press Association

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