An Isil-inspired couple who plotted a “devastating” bomb and poison attack in the UK after meeting on a Muslim dating website have been jailed for a total of 26 years today.
Munir Mohammed, a 37-year-old food factory worker from Sudan, and 33-year-old pharmacist Rowadia El-Hassan held “offensive and deeply disturbing” views towards gay people, followers of Shia Islam and other groups, Judge Michael Topolski QC said as he sentenced them at the Old Bailey.
Mohammed, who lived in London and communicated with Isil on Facebook, said he planned to carry out a lone wolf atrocity in the UK, the court heard.
He enlisted the help of El-Hassan, a divorced mother of two from Derby, who told him how to source the chemical components to make the explosive TATP, known as ‘Mother of Satan’. They also searched online about the manufacture of ricin, a highly toxic substance.
The pair were arrested on December 12, 2016 and convicted of preparation of terrorist acts last month. During the arrest, Mohammed was caught with two of the three components to make TATP.
At the Old Bailey on Thursday, the judge handed Mohammed – who arrived in the UK in 2014 in the back of a lorry and claimed asylum – a minimum sentence of 14 years. El-Hassan was jailed for 12 years with an extended five year licence.
Judge Michael Topolski QC said: “Munir Mohammed decided to carry out a lone wolf attack in this country. Rowadia El-Hassan, aware of this, was supportive of it and was willing to assist him.”
The judge said he was satisfied it was Mohammed who introduced the radical ideological material into the online relationship but said of El-Hassan that her commitment was “consistent and sustained.”
“Far from rejecting it, she embraced it and became more and more absorbed by it,” he said.
“I am sure that Munir Mohammed, whose plan this was, would not have got as far as he did in assembling all that he needed to launch a potentially devastating attack.”