Bomb plot doctor to face court


Summary

Bilal Abdullah, 27, arrested at Glasgow airport after the Jeep Cherokee he was riding in rammed into a terminal building, was charged on Friday with conspiring to cause explosions, Scotland Yard says.

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Seven other suspects remained in custody, including the alleged driver of the Jeep, hospitalised with severe burns.

Legal extension to detention

Meanwhile, a Gold Coast registrar detained by Police in relation to the plot remains in custody.

Police have obtained a legal extension to detain Dr Mohammed Haneef, who is reported to be the cousin of brothers Sabeel and Kafeel Ahmed, two key suspects in the investigation.

Dr Haneef’s detention will be legal until 11.30pm on Monday night.

An Australian Federal Police spokeswoman sayshere had been no development on his incarceration.

Meanwhile, federal police will today begin sifting through more than 31,000 documents – some in foreign languages – seized in raids yesterday on two West Australian hospitals.

Others ‘remain in custody’

"Other individuals arrested by the police in connection with the bomb attacks remain in custody pending a charging decision," says prosecutor Susan Hemming.

Five foreign doctors working in WA and NSW were also questioned by police yesterday as part of the widening inquiry into the terror plot.

Ms Hemming said Adbullah’s charge would relate to attacks in both London and Glasgow.

"I have now made the decision that there is sufficient evidence and authorised the charging of Bilal Abdullah with conspiracy to cause explosions following incidents in London and Glasgow on 29 June 2007 and 30 June 2007," she says.

Abdullah likely is to appear at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court today.

Witnesses said Abdullah appeared calm and collected as he and an accomplice crashed a Jeep Cherokee into Glasgow's Airport and then set it on fire in an attempt to ignite crude bombs.

"It was as if they were waiting there to get blown up," says police Sgt Torquil Campbell, who apprehended Abdullah and the Jeep's driver, Khalid Ahmed, in the packed airport terminal hall.

‘Intense militant’

The Iraqi-born doctor was known by others as an intense militant Muslim at Cambridge University, where he allegedly berated others for not being devout Muslims.

His status at the university is unclear but records show he graduated in Baghdad in 2004.

He also allegedly rented an apartment in Cambridge and frequently visited the city where his grandmother and an uncle lived, according to his friends.

Shiraz Maher, himself a former member of a radical Islamic group, said he remembered Abdullah berating a Muslim roommate for not being devout enough, showing him a beheading video and warning that could happen to him.

‘Angry about Iraq’

Mr Maher says Abdullah also claimed to have a number of videos of the then-leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who was killed by a US airstrike last year.

"He was certainly very angry about what was happening in Iraq. … He supported the insurgency in Iraq. He actively cheered the deaths of British and American troops in Iraq," Maher told BBC television.

It was in Cambridge that Abdullah is believed to have come to know suspect Mohammed Asha, when Asha worked at the Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge. Asha was arrested on June 30 with his wife, Marwa, on a highway in central England.

Key link

Details have emerged to show that Abdullah seems to be the key link between the suspects arrested in connection with the failed attacks. He reportedly had links to radical Islamic groups on the MI5 database, British security officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the case.

At the time of the attacks, Abdullah was working under supervision at the Royal Alexandra Hospital outside Glasgow.

He had been disciplined by his employers for spending too much time on the Internet, according to hospital staff, suggesting the plot may have been planned in cyberspace.

Police said they seized several computers from hospitals in Glasgow and other cities.

After work, Abdullah would return to a rented house in Glasgow, which a British security official said authorities believed was the site where the plotters made the bombs used in both the London and the airport attacks.


Bilal Abdullah, 27, arrested at Glasgow airport after the Jeep Cherokee he was riding in rammed into a terminal building, was charged on Friday with conspiring to cause explosions, Scotland Yard says.

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Seven other suspects remained in custody, including the alleged driver of the Jeep, hospitalised with severe burns.

Legal extension to detention

Meanwhile, a Gold Coast registrar detained by Police in relation to the plot remains in custody.

Police have obtained a legal extension to detain Dr Mohammed Haneef, who is reported to be the cousin of brothers Sabeel and Kafeel Ahmed, two key suspects in the investigation.

Dr Haneef’s detention will be legal until 11.30pm on Monday night.

An Australian Federal Police spokeswoman sayshere had been no development on his incarceration.

Meanwhile, federal police will today begin sifting through more than 31,000 documents – some in foreign languages – seized in raids yesterday on two West Australian hospitals.

Others ‘remain in custody’

"Other individuals arrested by the police in connection with the bomb attacks remain in custody pending a charging decision," says prosecutor Susan Hemming.

Five foreign doctors working in WA and NSW were also questioned by police yesterday as part of the widening inquiry into the terror plot.

Ms Hemming said Adbullah’s charge would relate to attacks in both London and Glasgow.

"I have now made the decision that there is sufficient evidence and authorised the charging of Bilal Abdullah with conspiracy to cause explosions following incidents in London and Glasgow on 29 June 2007 and 30 June 2007," she says.

Abdullah likely is to appear at City of Westminster Magistrates' Court today.

Witnesses said Abdullah appeared calm and collected as he and an accomplice crashed a Jeep Cherokee into Glasgow's Airport and then set it on fire in an attempt to ignite crude bombs.

"It was as if they were waiting there to get blown up," says police Sgt Torquil Campbell, who apprehended Abdullah and the Jeep's driver, Khalid Ahmed, in the packed airport terminal hall.

‘Intense militant’

The Iraqi-born doctor was known by others as an intense militant Muslim at Cambridge University, where he allegedly berated others for not being devout Muslims.

His status at the university is unclear but records show he graduated in Baghdad in 2004.

He also allegedly rented an apartment in Cambridge and frequently visited the city where his grandmother and an uncle lived, according to his friends.

Shiraz Maher, himself a former member of a radical Islamic group, said he remembered Abdullah berating a Muslim roommate for not being devout enough, showing him a beheading video and warning that could happen to him.

‘Angry about Iraq’

Mr Maher says Abdullah also claimed to have a number of videos of the then-leader of al-Qaeda in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who was killed by a US airstrike last year.

"He was certainly very angry about what was happening in Iraq. … He supported the insurgency in Iraq. He actively cheered the deaths of British and American troops in Iraq," Maher told BBC television.

It was in Cambridge that Abdullah is believed to have come to know suspect Mohammed Asha, when Asha worked at the Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge. Asha was arrested on June 30 with his wife, Marwa, on a highway in central England.

Key link

Details have emerged to show that Abdullah seems to be the key link between the suspects arrested in connection with the failed attacks. He reportedly had links to radical Islamic groups on the MI5 database, British security officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the case.

At the time of the attacks, Abdullah was working under supervision at the Royal Alexandra Hospital outside Glasgow.

He had been disciplined by his employers for spending too much time on the Internet, according to hospital staff, suggesting the plot may have been planned in cyberspace.

Police said they seized several computers from hospitals in Glasgow and other cities.

After work, Abdullah would return to a rented house in Glasgow, which a British security official said authorities believed was the site where the plotters made the bombs used in both the London and the airport attacks.