• Wednesday, Nov 14, 2018
  • Last Update : 08:39 am

British-Bangladeshi jailed for life over plot to kill PM May

  • Published at 10:06 am September 1st, 2018
Naa’imur Rahman
Naa’imur Rahman, who has been found guilty and sentenced for terrorism offences relating to Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May, is seen in this undated photograph issued by the Metropolitan Police in London, Britain, August 31, 2018Metropolitan Police/Handout via Reuters

Naa’imur was arrested last November shortly after unwittingly meeting an undercover police officer and collecting what he believed was a homemade bomb

A British-Bangladeshi man was sentenced to life in prison on Friday over a plot to kill Prime Minister Theresa May by first detonating an explosive device to get into her Downing Street office and then using a knife or a gun to attack her.

Naa’imur Rahman, 21, of north London, planned to detonate an improvised explosive device at the heavily guarded gates of Downing Street and gain access to May’s office in the ensuing chaos and assassinate her, according to British police.

He was convicted last month of preparing to commit acts of terrorism and at London’s Old Bailey court on Friday was given a life prison and will serve 30 years behind bars, reports Reuters.

“Rahman’s target was the prime minister, but he had no qualms about killing innocent bystanders in the process of reaching her,” said Dean Haydon, the UK’s Senior National Coordinator for Counter Terrorism.

“At one point he told a covert counter terrorism officer that even if he could not reach the Prime Minister, he just wanted to strike fear into people.”

As he put the plot together, Rahman believed he was corresponding online with members of the Islamic State (IS) militant group. However, he was talking to undercover officers from the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Britain’s MI5 domestic spy agency.

He was arrested last November shortly after unwittingly meeting an undercover police officer and collecting what he believed was a homemade bomb but was in fact a harmless replica.

After his conviction in July, police said, Rahman had been in contact with an uncle who had traveled to Syria and joined IS and who had encouraged his nephew to carry out attacks in Britain.

Rahman had been planning to carry out the attack for two years, but his resolve was hardened when he heard that his uncle had been killed in a drone attack.

Britain is on its second highest threat level with an attack considered highly likely. Last year, there were four deadly attacks and the head of MI5 said in May that a further 12 Islamist plots had been foiled since the first of these in March 2017.

Earlier this month, a man was charged with attempted murder after a car careered into people and a barrier at London’s parliament, with police stating the incident was being treated as an act of terrorism.