LONDON: An Islamic State (Daesh) extremist who called for his jihadi followers to mount an attack on Prince George is facing jail after dramatically admitting terror charges midway through his trial. He will be sentenced at Woolwich Crown Court on June 28.
Husnain Rashid, of Nelson, Lancashire, had maintained his innocence throughout proceedings at Woolwich Crown Court, but this morning admitted a string of terror offences.
Nearly two weeks into his trial Rashid was reindicted and pleaded guilty to three counts of engaging in conduct in preparation of terrorist acts. He also admitted one count of encouraging terrorism. The 32-year-old used a Telegram chat group to call on supporters on October 13 to target the four-year-old heir to the throne, who had started at Thomas’s Battersea a month earlier.
He also posted suggestions of which British football stadiums terrorists could strike, his trial had heard. Prosecutors said Rashid encouraged terrorism by posting a photo of the prince at the school super-imposed with silhouettes of masked jihad fighters. Nearly two weeks into his trial, the defendant, of Leonard Street, pleaded guilty to three counts of engaging in conduct in preparation of terrorist acts and one count of encouraging terrorism, covering offences spanning from October 2016 to April this year. Two charges of dissemination of a terrorist publication and one of failing to comply with a notice under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act will lie on file.
The jury were recalled and asked to find the defendant guilty on the charges to which he had pleaded guilty. Judge Andrew Lees told the defendant: “For the past week I have listened to the most disturbing allegations.
You have admitted these allegations of encouraging others to commit terrorist activities and publishing statements to encourage the killing of others. “It is inevitable that you will receive a very lengthy prison sentence and there will be a consideration of a life prison sentence.” He added: “The question of your future dangerousness and the protection of the public is a matter that I will have to give very careful consideration.”