Terror trial: Estranged wife wanted to be 'fourth lion'

L to R: Irfan Naseer, Irfan Khalid and Ashik Ali The court heard Salma Kabal was trying to reconcile with Mr Ali (right)

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The estranged wife of a man accused of plotting a terror attack offered herself as a helper in an attempt to win him back, a court has heard.

In a reference to the spoof film Four Lions, Salma Kabal asked Ashik Ali if she could be the "fourth lion", Woolwich Crown Court was told.

Brian Altman, QC, prosecuting, said she was snubbed by him and is not on trial.

Mr Ali, 27, Irfan Khalid, 27, and Irfan Naseer, 31, all from Birmingham, deny preparing for terrorist acts.

The jury has heard the trio planned to set off a series of suicide bombs in an attack which prosecutors said would have dwarfed the 7 July 2005 bombings in London and two of the men had received terror training in Pakistan.

Mr Altman told the jury Ms Kabal did not know what the group were planning as Mr Ali withheld details from her.

'Lioness'

She offered to be the "lioness" of the group, the court heard.

Mr Ali told his wife he wanted to fight the jihad - or holy war - overseas but did not want to get her involved, the court heard.

Mr Ali said he still loved her but said he did not think she could adapt to fight the jihad abroad, and made reference to drone strikes, the court heard.

Mr Altman said the group made reference to the film Four Lions, in which a group of incompetent terrorists wear fancy dress in a comedy plot, and Mr Ali laughingly told his wife: "Oh, you think this is a flipping Four Lions. We're one man short, there's three of us. We ain't Four Lions yet."

Ms Kabal replied: "I'll be your fourth one."

Mr Ali said: "You can't be the fourth one."

Ms Kabal said: "Lioness."

Mr Altman said: "That may be the arithmetic in the context of the film title, but the comment, couched in a joke, and made in order to divert her, is telling.

"It is telling because it reveals, we suggest, the truth, that there were three of them together but they were not planning a trip abroad to fight jihad."

The prosecution claims Mr Naseer and Mr Khalid went to the Taliban stronghold of Waziristan, in Pakistan, in the summer of 2011 for training.

In another echo of a plotline in the 2010 film, Mr Ali joked with his wife about blowing up Muslims in Birmingham, the court heard.

'Vaseline plot'

As Ms Kabal tried to ask him again about his alleged plans, Mr Ali said: "The General Saab, you know, the command we send from high above, innit, hierarchy is that you should blow your Muslims up man, yeah.

"Blow up all the Muslims around Alum Rock up innit and Washwood Heath and Aston".

The court heard the group discussed various alternatives to a bomb attack, including mixing poisons into Vaseline or Nivea and then rubbing it on car doors, in an attempt to kill "about 1,000 people".

In a bugged conversation, the court heard, Mr Naseer recalled: "You know like the door handles on a whole, imagine putting it on whole like area innit overnight and when they come in the morning to work they start touching the, they open the door and then five minutes they die man, all of them start dying and that, kill about 1,000 people."

Mr Naseer denies five counts, Mr Khalid four and Mr Ali three, all between Christmas Day 2010 and 19 September 2011.

The trial continues.

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