25-year-old British “Islamic State” supporter Mr. Umar Haque was found guilty of plotting crimes against the state after the court heard how he tried to recruit children to carry out attacks all across London. His favorite targets were Big Ben, Tower Bridge, Heathrow Airport, and the Westfield shopping center in east London.
Mr. Haque, a self-taught Islamic teacher, showed the children videos of beheadings and, whilst disguising it as a game, made them re-enact previous attacks that had taken place in the UK.
Mr. Dean Haydon of the Metropolitan Police's Counter Terrorism Command explained to the court at the Old Bailey that: "His plan was to create an army of children to assist with multiple terrorist attacks throughout London."
"He tried and he did, we believe, radicalize vulnerable children from the ages of 11 to 14."
He was able, through his Islamic teachings, to come into contact with 110 children. Of those, 35 are now being watched via long-term safeguarding measures as police fear they could radicalize.
Six children testified during Mr. Haque’s trial, telling the court about the videos they watched and how he taught them to fight.
Mr. Haydon explained: "He shouldn't have been teaching, so that's a concern."
"We have had challenges with both the local community and some of these institutions."
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Self-styled teacher Umar Haque has been found guilty at the Old Bailey of trying to recruit an "army of children" for a series of Islamic State-inspired attacks across London.</p>— LBC Breaking (@lbcbreaking) <a href="https://twitter.com/lbcbreaking/status/969578188321054721?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">March 2, 2018</a></blockquote>
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After the guilty verdict, Mr. Haque was dragged from the room by officers and yelled at the judge: "You will clearly see Islamic State establish itself in the Arabian peninsula and that droughts will affect Europe and America."
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