Beds, Herts & Bucks

Two guilty of Luton IS terror support plot

Mohammed Sufiyan Choudry (l) and Zaiur Rahman (r) Image copyright Met Police
Image caption Mohammed Sufiyan Choudry (left) and Zaiur Rahman were caught in an undercover police operation in Luton

Two men have been convicted of organising terrorist speeches and encouraging support for so-called Islamic State (IS).

Mohammed Sufiyan Choudry and Zaiur Rahman, both members of the Luton chapter of the banned group Al-Muhajiroun, were caught in an undercover police operation in 2015.

Choudry, 23, from Maidenhead, and Rahman, 39, of Luton, were found guilty at the Old Bailey after a retrial.

They will be sentenced at a later date.

The pair were among a group of five covertly recorded when an undercover officer infiltrated their Luton-based group over a 20-month period before police arrested them.

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Bedfordshire Police said the five men attended meetings at a church in Luton and a marquee in Rahman's back garden, during which members praised IS and urged others to support the terror group and travel to Syria to fight.

The meetings were attended by up to 80 people including young children.

'A wave is coming'

The Old Bailey heard that, during a July 2015 gathering, Choudry spoke of "40 trucks driving down Oxford Street full of explosives".

He also said: "A wave is coming. Either be a part of it or you drown.".

The five men were arrested by officers from Bedfordshire Police and the Metropolitan Police Counter Terrorism Command in December 2015.

Three were convicted by a jury in August.

Mohammed Istiak Alamgir, 37, Yousaf Bashir, 36 and Rajib Khan, 37, all from Luton, were convicted for their roles in spreading IS ideology.

Choudry and Rahman faced a retrial after the jury was unable to reach a verdict.

Choudry was found guilty of one count of encouraging support for a proscribed organisation while Rahman was convicted of three counts of arranging/assisting in, arranging/managing a meeting to support a proscribed organisation.

All five are expected to be sentenced together at a later date.

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