South Essex teen admits plotting Islamist terror attack ‘targeting police officers’

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From the Southend Echo and the Metro

A TEENAGER from Wickford has pleaded guilty to plotting an Islamist terror attack allegedly targeting police officers or military personnel.

Matthew King, 19, expressed a desire to ‘torture, mutilate and kill military personnel’ as he prepared to stake out a British Army barracks in Stratford (I think that is a Territorial Army A HQ), east London.

Other targets for a potential knife attack included a police station, railway station, and Stratford magistrates’ court.

King was arrested at his home on May 18 by officers from the Metropolitan Police Counter Terrorism Command and his mobile phone was examined.

Prosecutor Gillian Curl had said that no “specific act of terrorism” had been identified.  “He was preparing for an act against either serving on-duty police officers or military personnel.”

After being cautioned, King responded: “I don’t believe in the UK law, the only law I believe in is the law of Allah.”

At a hearing at the Old Bailey on Friday, King pleaded guilty to preparation of terrorist acts. Authorities had been tipped off about King through an anti-terrorist hotline and the Prevent counter-terrorism programme after he posted a video on a WhatsApp group on April 13 last year.

According to a written basis of plea document submitted by the defence, King ‘actively desired’ to travel to Syria to areas controlled by IS to participate in their activities . . . The prosecution rejected the defence claim an attack on home soil was a ‘fall back option’ if King failed to get to Syria.

In it was an image of a male holding a knife with the words: “Those who said that there is no jihad and no battle. They are lying! Our jihad will continue until disappearance until the day of judgment! Now the battle has begun and it will continue until the day of judgment. So take out your sword, O youth, and destroy the kufr.”

At a hearing at the Old Bailey on Friday, King pleaded guilty to preparation of terrorist acts. Judge Mark Lucraft KC adjourned sentencing until April 14th.

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