4 UK men convicted of plotting attack on soldiers
LONDON — Three British men who dubbed themselves the “Three Musketeers” were convicted on Wednesday of plotting a bomb attack on troops or police inspired by Islamic extremism.
Jurors at London’s Central Criminal Court found 29-yearold Naweed Ali, 25-year-old Khobaib Hussain and Mohibur Rahman, 33, guilty of preparing terrorist acts, after a trial that was partly held in secret for national security reasons.
A fourth defendant, Tahir Aziz, was convicted of the same charge. Prosecutors said the 38-year-old was brought into the plot in its later stages.
Ali, Hussain and Rahman met while serving prison terms for terrorism offenses, prosecutors said. They later set up a group on a messaging app called the “Three Musketeers”.
As they planned an attack, the men were under surveillance by the United Kingdom’s intelligence service, MI5, which created a fake courier company in Birmingham and hired Hussein and Ali.
In August last year, officers searched Ali’s car and found weapons including an imitation handgun, a partially constructed pipe bomb and a meat cleaver with the word “kaffir” — “infidel” in Arabic — scratched onto the blade. Prosecutors said the men intended to attack police or military targets.