Jul 10, 2007
LONDON, England (CNN) -- Four men accused of taking part in an extremist Muslim plot to carry out a series of suicide bombings on London's transport system in July 2005 have been convicted of conspiracy to murder.
Muktar Said Ibrahim, 29; Yassin Omar, 26; and Ramzi Mohammed, 25, were found guilty Monday of plotting to bomb London's public transport system on July 21, 2005. Later, Hussain Osman, 28, was also found guilty of conspiracy to murder for taking part in the plot.
The jury, still deliberating on two co-defendents, was sent home for the night after failing to reach verdicts on Manfo Kwaku Asiedu, 33, and Adel Yahya, 24.
Earlier, Judge Adrian Fulford told the jury of nine women and three men he would accept 10-2 majority verdicts on the remaining three defendants, The Associated Press reported.
The verdicts follow a six-month trial, coming days after police uncovered a plot to detonate car bombs in London's entertainment district and two men rammed a flaming Jeep Cherokee into Glasgow airport. Watch the trial conclude for four men accused of plotting the July 21 attacks » (http://edition.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/europe/07/09/britain.july21/index.html#cnnSTCVideo)
The July 21 failed attacks happened 14 days after the July 7 London suicide attacks (http://topics.edition.cnn.com/topics/suicide_attacks), which killed 52 commuters and four bombers.
The defendants -- all from London -- denied charges of conspiracy to murder and conspiracy to cause explosions.
Four of the men claimed the devices, made from liquid hydrogen peroxide, chapati flour, acetone and acid, were a hoax. Another claimed they were real bombs but that he was duped while the sixth man denies having anything to do with the alleged conspiracy.
During the trial the jury was told by prosecutor Nigel Sweeney that the conspiracy "had been in existence long before the events of July 7" and did not appear to be some "hastily arranged copycat."
Each bomb was placed in a large plastic container in a knapsack and screws, tacks, washers or nuts, were taped to the outside to "maximize the possibility of injury," Sweeney said.
The July 21 devices were triggered, on three subway trains and a double-decker bus, the same as those two weeks before. But they failed to detonate fully, and no one was injured.
Forensic scientists had tested the mixture, however, and "in every experiment this mixture has exploded," Sweeney said.
"We say that the failure of these bombs to explode has nothing to do with the intentions of the defendants. It was simply the good fortune of the traveling public that this day they were spared."
The jury heard that Omar's one-bedroom flat in north London (http://topics.edition.cnn.com/topics/london) was the conspirators' bomb factory, "where the great majority, if not all, of the work required to make those bombs was carried out."
Sweeney said Mohamed was seen trying to set off his bomb facing a woman with a pushchair and was wearing a top with New York on it, "no doubt connected with the events of9/11."
He said films featuring images of beheadings of Western hostages and other attacks, including those on September 11 in New York, had been found in two of the defendants' flats.
Three of the accused attended sermons by the radical Islamic preacher Abu Hamza at London's Finsbury Park Mosque, one received military training in Sudan, while four went on a camping trip to Scotland in 2004 to "get fit for jihad," Sweeney said.
Most of the suspects, who are largely of East African descent, were arrested in Britain a few days after the failed bombings. Osman was held in Rome a week after the attacks. He told police the bombs were only intended to scare people, the court heard.
It was disclosed that five of the six men had been under surveillance by police almost 15 months before their alleged bombing attempt.