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London Bridge attacker used to recruit, fund Pakistan terror camps


ANI Asia
The man, who stabbed two people to death in a terror attack at London Bridge, is believed to have spent part of his late teens in Pakistan. After returning to the UK, he used to preach extremism on the internet while funding the terror camps in Pakistan and recruiting men for it.
The British Police identified the London Bridge attacker as British national Usman Khan, a 28-year-old male from Staffordshire, who was convicted in 2012 of terrorism offences and released in December 2018. Khan was born in London and is of Pakistani ethnicity.
Usman Khan was shot dead by officers after Friday's attack.
Khan, inspired by the ideology of al-Qaeda terror group, was previously sentenced for his role in the London Stock Exchange bombing in 1990, Dawn reported.
According to the British media reports, Khan -- a British citizen born in the UK -- left school with no qualifications after spending part of his late teens in Pakistan, where he lived with his mother when she became ill. On his return to the UK, he started preaching extremism on the internet and attracted a significant following.
In January 2012, Khan pleaded guilty to engaging in conduct in preparation for acts of terrorism contrary to section 5(1) of the UK's Terrorism Act 2006.
Khan was among nine men charged with conspiracy to bomb high-profile London targets in 2010. At that time, a hand-written target list found by the British police counter-terror force at one of the defendant's homes listed the names and addresses of the London mayor Boris Johnson, the American Embassy and the London Stock Exchange.
Khan was sentenced to detention for public protection with a minimum custodial term of eight years -- a sentenced designed by UK authorities to protect the public from serious offenders whose crimes did not merit a life sentence.
In December 15, 2010, Khan had been monitored by UK authorities in conversation about how to construct a pipe bomb from a recipe referred to in an Al Qaeda publication.
Authorities also heard Khan seeking to radicalise another male and making clear his intentions to travel abroad to a training camp which outwardly appeared to be a madrassah. The court noted that "Khan expected only victory, martyrdom or imprisonment".
Khan had been living in the Staffordshire area of central England, the police said, where searches are still being carried out in connection to the attack.
The violence erupted less than two weeks before Britain holds a national election. In the wake of the incident, major political parties, including Labour Party and Conservative Party, have temporarily suspended campaigning for the December 12 election, as a mark of respect for the victims in the attack.

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First Published: Nov 30 2019 | 12:04 PM IST

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