July 10, 2007 in Nation/World

Four guilty in 2005 London bomb plot

Los Angeles Times The Spokesman-Review

LONDON – Four of six men accused in a failed attempt to blow up portions of London’s public transit system in 2005 were convicted Monday of conspiracy to commit murder.

The jury will continue deliberations on the fate of the other two defendants today.

The panel unanimously rejected the defense contention that the bombs, which failed to explode, were meant merely to scare the public and prompt government officials to reconsider British involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“The failure of those bombs to explode owed nothing to the intention of these defendants. Rather it was simply the good fortune of the traveling public that day that they were spared,” prosecuting lawyer Nigel Sweeney said in court.

Prosecutors linked the failed bombings on July 21, 2005, to successful suicide attacks on the London transit system two weeks earlier, which killed 52 people and injured hundreds.

The jury convicted Muktar Said Ibrahim, 29, Ramzi Mohammed, 25, Yassin Omar, 26, and Hussain Osman, 28. The panel still must determine the fates of Manfo Asiedu, 33, and Adel Yahya, 24.

The men were inspired by the bombings of July 7, 2005, according to the defense. After searching the Internet, Ibrahim said he found instructions for building bombs through a terrorist Web site and intentionally changed the procedure so that the explosives would not detonate.

Prosecutors showed evidence, however, that Ibrahim had spent three months training in Pakistan in 2004 at the same time as Mohamed Sidique Khan and Shahzad Tanweer, two bombers who died in the July 7 attacks. There he learned to build bombs similar to those used by Khan and Tanweer, the prosecutors said.

Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email