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Group: J7 Forum Team
Member No.: 18
Joined: 24-January 06
Terrorist sentenced for conspiracy to murder 07/11/2006
Following the sentence of Dhiren Barot, Patrick Stevens, Crown Prosecutor, said:
"The extent and potential impact of Barot's plans were made graphically clear in court. Fortunately, as a result of his timely arrest and subsequent conviction his plans could not be carried out."
The charge of conspiracy to murder covered a four year period and included a wide range criminal activity, involving plans for attacks in the UK and attacks on buildings in the USA, including: the IMF and World Bank buildings, Washington; the New York Stock Exchange and Citigroup buildings, New York; and the Prudential Building, Newark, New Jersey.
Mr Stevens said: "Barot's plea of guilty is a result of the tireless dedication of the police Counter Terrorist Command, the Crown Prosecution Service Counter Terrorism Division, and counsel. For more than two years we have worked exhaustively in co-operation with the security and intelligence agencies, and international colleagues, to present a case that ultimately proved unanswerable. I would like to give thanks to all involved for that effort."
Notes to Editors Barot pleaded guilty to conspiracy to murder on October 12 2006. At this hearing Barot formally entered a written basis of plea. There is to be a trial of Barot's seven remaining co-defendants in April, therefore anything beyond fair and accurate reporting of what is said in court has the potential to affect that trial, and would be subject to the strict liability rules. At the request of their representatives, the Prosecution has agreed not to mention the precise address of any co-defendants to avoid personal difficulties for them. The media is asked to respect that approach. For further information please contact CPS Press Office on 020 7796 8079.
Group: J7 Forum Team
Member No.: 18
Joined: 24-January 06
Counter Terrorism Bill Briefing for House of Lords Second Reading July 2008
Justice website: www.justice.org.uk
PDF Page 15
#44 ...To demonstrate the increasing complexity of cases, in the Dhiron Barot case in 2004, there were 274 computers seized compared with 400 computers in the alleged airline plot in 2006. In addition, there were approximately 2,000 computer discs, CDs and DVDs in the Dhiron Barot case compared with approximately 8,000 computer discs, CDs and DVDs in the alleged airline plot. Finally, there were 8,224 exhibits seized in the Dhiron Barot case compared with in excess of 25,000 in the alleged airline plot. [Pre-charge Detention of Terrorist Suspects (Home Office, December 2007), p 6.]
#45. These figures, however, do not necessarily reflect any increase in the actual complexity of the alleged plots themselves. Statistics concerning the amount of material seized in any particular case, or the number of exhibits used at trial, may only reflect the complexity of the police’s own suspicions rather than hard fact.
#46. For example, the Forest Gate raid in 2006 involved over 250 police officers, the imposition of a ban on aircraft flying below 2500 feet over the site of the investigation, and the closure of nearby roads for several days. It reportedly followed a two month surveillance operation involving police and MI5, and the raid itself cost over £2.2 million including £864,300 in overtime payments for the police officers involved. [luvly jubbly, sarge] The so-called ‘complexity’ of an investigation, in other words, may have nothing to do with whether a plot actually exists.
Group: J7 Forum Team
Member No.: 235
Joined: 6-November 06
TOXIC PLOT: 8 CHARGED. Byline: GARY JONES
EIGHT men have been charged over an alleged terrorist murder plot involving radioactive or chemical attacks.
Police claim financial institutions in America were targets - including the Stock Exchange and Citigroup in New York and Washington's International Monetary Fund.
The suspects were among 13 held on August 3 in a series of raids by anti-terrorist police and MI5 at London; Bushey, Herts; Luton, Beds, and Blackburn, Lancs.
They are all charged with conspiring to murder "other persons" between January 2000 and August 4 this year.
And they are accused of plotting to use "radioactive materials, toxic gases, chemicals and explosives" on the same dates.
The charges reveal notebooks with information on explosives and poisons were allegedly found in the raids, as well as extracts from the Terrorist's Handbook.
Two of the suspects, Dhiren Barot, 32, and 26-year-old Nadeem Tarmohammed, both of London, are alleged to have had a "reconnaissance plan" of the Prudential Building in New Jersey.
Barot was further accused of possessing details of the other alleged targets.
The six others charged are Omar Abdul Rehman, 20, of Bushey, Zia Ul Haq and Quaisar Shaffi, both 25 and from London, 31-year-old Abdul Aziz Jalil, of Luton, Mohammed Bhatti, 24, of Harrow, Middx, and Junade Feroze, of Blackburn. They are due to appear before Bow Street magistrates sitting at Belmarsh high-security court in South East London today.
Shaffi is also charged with possessing an extract from the Terrorist's Handbook.
His family yesterday told of their shock at the news.
A cousin, who gave his name as Oz, said: "We are really worried. We just want to find out how he is."
Neighbours said Shaffi, known by his nickname Q, has a string of luxury cars, including a Porsche. One added: "No one can believe this, they are such a nice family. There has never been any trouble before."
Mudassar Arani, a solicitor for seven of the men, claimed they had been psychologically abused by being held in solitary confinement solitary confinement n. the placement of a prisoner in a Federal or state prison in a cell away from other prisoners, usually as a form of internal penal discipline, but occasionally to protect the convict from other prisoners or to prevent the prisoner from causing and some were even stopped from reading the Koran.
LONDONER Matthew Monks, 32, quizzed along with the eight men, has been charged with possessing a banned weapon.
TARGETS? USA'S FINANCIAL CENTRES; TERROR TARGETS: The New York Stock Exchange and IMF in Washington
Group: J7 Forum Team
Member No.: 18
Joined: 24-January 06
Background Barot operation posed complex challenge Press Association guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 7 November 2006 15.46 GMT
Before the July 7 suicide bombings, the investigation into the activities of terror-plotter Dhiren Barot was the largest and most demanding anti-terrorism operation that Scotland Yard had ever carried out.
Codenamed Operation Rhyme, it set new standards in terms of its scale and complexity, and forced police to confront new technological challenges and adapt their investigative methods to meet the challenges posed by a new brand of international terrorism.
Barot himself was nearly impossible to keep track of. An experienced terrorist, he was highly skilled in counter-surveillance techniques, and made it as difficult as possible for officers to gather the evidence they knew they needed if he was ever to be convicted in a court of law. [^ '8,224 exhibits seized in the Dhiron Barot case', but it all came down to the 'written basis of (guilty) plea' submitted by the 'experienced terrorist' himself]
In the end, their hand was forced. When Barot's terrifying plans were discovered on a laptop seized during a raid in Pakistan[or in Mohammed Bhatti's garage (#25 & #29) in Harrow?] , detectives knew they had to arrest him immediately, despite the fact that there was almost no admissible evidence against him.
Barot was first identified and put under surveillance in the UK on June 15 2004. For some time, police had been aware that a "significant al-Qaida operative" was operating somewhere inside the UK, but until then they did not know who or where he was, or even what he looked like[but nonetheless put him under surveillance].
Scotland Yard's anti-terrorist branch devoted huge resources to identify him, but even when they finally did, keeping track of him was nigh impossible. "He was probably the most difficult individual to keep under surveillance that we have had in recent times," a counter terrorism source said. [what about surveillance of the 'safe house'? [#25& #29]
Barot was very security conscious. He was well versed in counter surveillance techniques, rarely stayed anywhere for more than a night, used a variety of different vehicles and hardly ever used mobile phones.
He would even perform sudden manoeuvres in heavy traffic or drive round and round roundabouts to make it harder for surveillance officers to tail him. [continuously shake head?] Given that he had no obvious source of income so far as the taxman was concerned, and did not claim benefits, police believe that Barot must have had access to considerable resources [including his 9 No. UK passports] to enable him to maintain his transient lifestyle.
He managed to maintain numerous bank accounts and credit cards, and it can only be assumed that his funding came from his well-documented terrorism connections. Whether, by the end of June 2004, Barot knew he was being followed is unclear. What is known is that he managed to disappear off the radar completely at the end of July.
It was while Barot had gone to ground that his plans for the "gas limos project" were discovered during an anti-terror raid in Pakistan. This proved the "trigger" for his arrest.
Once they realised what Barot was plotting, detectives decided it was simply too dangerous to leave him out on the streets. They resolved that the next moment he reappeared on the radar, he would be arrested.
Anti-terror officers are frequently caught in this kind of dilemma - whether to intervene and disrupt a plot or wait for more evidence - but in Barot's case the police had little choice. The need to ensure public safety was paramount.
A counter-terrorism source described the thinking of the authorities at that time: "It was always possible that Barot could have been alerted to what happened in Pakistan, and since we did not know how far advanced his attack plans actually were, the decision was made to arrest him as soon as he was next seen."
At the beginning of August, Barot was spotted by a surveillance team in London. Once he had been identified, police immediately began looking for a safe moment to arrest him. On August 3, detectives arrested Barot as he went for a haircut in the Golden Touch barbers in Willesden High Street, north London.
Armed police were involved, but officers describe it as a "low-key arrest". No shots were fired and Barot was taken for questioning at London's high-security Paddington Green police station. Then began a race against time to build a case against him within the 14-day maximum custody period.
"It is no exaggeration at all to say that, at the time of the arrest, there was little or no admissible evidence against Barot," a counter-terrorism source said.
The fact that it was possible to bring charges against him within 14 days, and then build a case that left him with no option but to plead guilty, was testament to the work of Scotland Yard's anti-terrorist branch, the source said.
Senior officers described it as an "extraordinary investigation", the largest and most complex that Scotland Yard had ever carried out at that time.
Police examined more than 300 computers and 1,800 discs, CDs, zip drives and hard drives. Barot was skilled in using encryption software and, in what would become a feature of other major counter-terrorism operations, police had to develop new techniques to access the reams of research material he had buried deep within his computer files.
One of the most extraordinary aspects of the investigation was the sheer number of keys that police recovered. During the inquiry, detectives found more than 600 sets of keys and officers spent 14 months and visited more than 4,000 garages or lock-ups trying to match them up. The fear was that one could contain explosives or even radioactive material. Eventually they managed to match 77 keys, but hundreds remain unaccounted-for.
Over the next two years, detectives utilised their full range of investigative tools - handwriting analysis, facial mapping, forensic linguistics - to collate every scrap of available evidence against Barot. Their hard work paid spectacular dividends.
As one counter-terrorism source said: "The case against Barot built to the point where the evidence was overwhelming and he had no realistic option other than to plead guilty."
In doing so, Barot became the first British Muslim to admit to plotting to carry out a mass casualty terrorist attack in the UK. Nevertheless, and despite the fact that detectives spent two-and-a-half years investigating Barot, there remain significant gaps in their knowledge.
They still have little idea of what he was doing for much of 2002 and 2003, and the exact reasons for his conversion to Islam remain unclear. He had not worked properly since he left his job at Air Malta in 1995, apart from a brief period of employment with an agency when he worked as a night porter at a high-class apartment block in London. His book claims that he was married to a woman in Thailand, but she has never been traced.
Barot's family, from whom he is believed to be estranged, have shed little light on his background. But there is no mystery regarding what Barot will be doing with most of the rest of his adult life. He will be in jail.
See Barot/Naeem Noor Khan/Ghailani links upthread:
Guantanamo man loses torture bid to avoid U.S. trial
Mon May 10, 2010 6:17pm EDT
(Reuters) - Criminal charges against the first detainee transferred to the United States from a U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to face trial in a civilian court cannot be dropped just because he was tortured, a New York judge ruled on Monday.
In a written opinion, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan denied Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani's motion to have his indictment dismissed on grounds that he was tortured while in CIA custody and as a result deprived of essential rights.
Ghailani, a Tanzanian, has pleaded not guilty to charges including conspiring with Osama bin Laden and other members of al Qaeda to kill Americans, and separate charges of murder for 224 people killed in the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Tanzania and Kenya.
He was taken into custody in Pakistan in July 2004 and then interrogated outside the United States as part of Washington's secret "extraordinary rendition" program in which terrorism suspects were captured in one country and interrogated in another.
Ghailani was transferred to the U.S. naval base in Cuba in 2006 and moved to the United States last June to be tried in Manhattan federal court.
In his motion, Kaplan said, Ghailani had made the case that being tortured was so "outrageous" and "shocking" that it violated his right to due process.
Kaplan argued, however, that since the prosecution is not using any statements Ghailani made while in CIA custody, a conviction in this case would be "entirely unconnected" to the alleged rights violation.
Steve Zissou, an attorney for Ghailani, was not immediately available for comment.
#8 ...It was emphasised [in the court indictment containing 23 counts against Barot] in the course of his written basis of plea that, in pleading guilty as he did, B[arot] was making no admission that he had conspired with any of the other named defendants.
So in the accepted [written] guilty plea given by Barot, upon which his conviction was secured, no inference of a conspiracy involving the other associated accused can be drawn.
The 'guilty' pleas submitted by Jalil, Bhatti, Ul Haq, Feroze, Rehman & Tarmohamed (see case notes of November 2008 appeal hearing) appear to have been 'tendered and accepted' over a (2 week) period of ('case management') time, before a whittled down jury, members of which the defence complained had a 'basis of some connection to the armed services and/or the metropolitan police'. [see paragraph #39] The judge ought to have excluded these two potential jurors for unsuitable connections however the judge ruled [see paragraph #43] that they were 'not to be excluded'.
Shaffi was subject to a(n other) separate trial, because he pleased 'not guilty'.... [see post here...
This post has been edited by Sinclair on Apr 11 2013, 12:50 PM
IN THE SUPREME COURT OF JUDICATURE COURT OF APPEAL (CRIMINAL DIVISION) ON APPEAL FROM The Honourable Mr Justice Butterfield Woolwich Crown Court Royal Courts of Justice Strand, London, WC2A 2LL 16/05/2007
B e f o r e :
THE LORD CHIEF JUSTICE OF ENGLAND AND WALES THE RIGHT HONOURABLE LORD JUSTICE LATHAM and THE HONOURABLE MR JUSTICE TREACY ____________________ Between: DHIREN BAROT Appellant
- and -
R Respondent ___________________
Mr I. Mcdonald QC and Mr A. Bajwa for the Appellant Mr E. Lawson QC and Mr E. Brown for the Respondent Hearing dates : 3rd April 2007
#4 Early in 2004 the appellant visited Pakistan, returning on April 21st. In July 2004 a computer was found by Government officials in Gujarat in Pakistan. On that computer were detailed plans for terrorist attacks in the United Kingdom. On 3 August  the appellant and a number of associates were arrested in England. Further evidence was obtained upon searching premises that they had occupied. This formed the basis of the facts opened by Mr Lawson QC for the Crown at the sentencing hearing.
#5A written basis of plea was signed by Mr Lawson [for the crown] and by Mr Macdonald QC, counsel for the appellant. Under this the appellant accepted that he was party to the preparation of proposals for mass murder in both the United States and the United Kingdom. These proposals were prepared for the purpose of being submitted for approval and support to Al Qaida or an associated terrorist organisation. They are remarkable in form, resembling a prospectus for a business venture.
#6 It was the Crown's case was that the appellant was the principal architect and the author of these proposals and this was accepted by Mr Macdonald QC on behalf of the appellant. The facts that we now set out are based on passages in the prosecution's opening or the judge's sentencing remarks that have not been challenged by Mr Macdonald.
#7 The appellant was born in 1971 in India. His Hindu parents brought him to England in 1972, where he became a British citizen. At the age of 20 he embraced Islamic extremism. In October 1995 he went to Kotti, an area in the Kashmir region, where he attended a terrorist training camp and received instructions in the use of weapons, explosives and other terrorist related activities. In 1999 he went to the Philippines to attend another terrorist camp for two weeks, where he was trained in the use of small arms and mortars, the handling of explosives and in jungle craft.
#8 In 2000 he began to apply himself to preparing proposals for terrorist attacks in the United States. He visited the United States in the autumn of 2000 and again in the spring of 2001 to carry out research. The fruits of his labours were detailed descriptions and plans of a number of prominent buildings that might be suitable for terrorist attacks. These housed the headquarters of four key financial institutions: the New York Stock Exchange, Citigroup in New York, Prudential in Newark and the International Monetary Fund and World Bank in Washington. The proposals were illustrated by photographs and a video of the sites in question.
#9 Some work was done on these proposals as late as February 2003, but the prosecution accepted that after the events of September 11 2001, plans for terrorist activities in the United States may have been 'shelved' in favour of proposals for such activities in the United Kingdom. Those proposals were for four different types of terrorist attack. By far the most detailed was for the 'Gas Limos Project'. This proposed packing three stretch limousines with propane gas cylinders and explosives and detonating these in an underground car park. A summary commented: "Estimated casualties to be hundreds if the building collapses (Inshalla)"
#10 There were three subsidiary proposals, that were intended for "synchronised, concurrent (back-to-back) execution, on the same day and time. The first was described as the 'Radiation (Dirty Bomb) Proposal'. This proposed the ignition of ten thousand smoke detectors. The judge commented: "That project was, on its face, designed to achieve a number of further and collateral objectives, such as to cause injury, fear, terror and chaos. The expert evidence is that the project, if carried through, would have been unlikely of itself to cause death as opposed to causing considerable fear, panic and social disruption".
#11 The third plan was much less detailed. It was to bring about a major rail disaster by explosion or sabotage. One example suggested was an explosion in a tunnel under the Thames that would "rupture through to the river itself". The final proposal involved the high-jacking of a petrol tanker and using it to ram a target. This was put forward only in outline.
The judge's summary of the facts
#12 Dealing with the proposals that related to the United States the judge observed:
"Had it not been for the terrible events of the 11th September 2001 I have little doubt that one or more of those proposals would have become a dreadful reality. I accept that it would not have been you who carried out the attacks- that would have been the task of others. Your task was to identify the targets and the best strategy to achieve what you would have regarded as success". "
#13The judge then turned to an issue as to how soon the proposals in relation to the United Kingdom were liable to be implemented. The Basis of Plea recorded:
"The Crown does not have evidence to contradict a defence contention that no funding had been received, nor any vehicles or bomb-making materials acquired, in furtherance of executing the conspiracy".
#14 Mr Macdonald submitted to the judge that the United Kingdom proposals were only in the early stages of preparation [if at all!] when the appellant was arrested. The judge took the view that the evidence was equivocal on this point, but commented:
"In my judgment it does not greatly affect the situation. Even if the execution of these plans was not to take place for some time, I am satisfied that, unless you were stopped, it was only a matter of time before the grim reality of your plans took effect". "
#15 The judge went on to deal with both the appellant's involvement in the conspiracy and the consequences that it would have had had it been implemented.
"It is impossible to convey in a few words the gravity of what you and those with whom you conspired[remember that Barots written basis of plea made no admission that he had conspired with any of the other named defendants], [I]whoever they were[indeed!], hoped to achieve. For years you dedicated yourself to planning the means by which you and those involved with you could slaughter hundreds, if not thousands, of wholly innocent men, women and children. This was no idle and impractical plot with little prospect of becoming reality. The detail of the planning; the care with which you concealed what you were doing, the elaborate lengths to which you went to avoid detection, and the steps you took to bring the plans to fruition, all point to a determined, sophisticated and deadly design. I have no doubt that, had your evil purpose not been discovered and thwarted, you and your gang of murderous cohorts would have brought about the terrible massacres you intended"[/I]
#16 At the hearing before us Mr Macdonald [for Barot] made no challenge to this summary of the facts. He confined his submissions in respect of these to a contention that the plan was a long way from being put into effect at the time that the appellant and his associates were arrested.
#17 The documents discovered by the police included one that was described as 'the 1996 document'. This contained a survey of certain London hotels and railway stations. After the hearing we had the opportunity, which we had not had before the hearing, to read, in the voluminous documentation, statements by three prosecution expert witnesses, to which our attention had not been drawn. These were annexed to a commentary, prepared by the appellant for the purpose of discounting any suggestion that the premises to which the 1996 document referred would have been suitable targets for the Gas Limos Project. As to that Mr Lawson, in opening the facts, made it plain to the judge that the prosecution had no basis for suggesting that these premises were targets for that project. It seemed to us, however, that the expert statements raised questions as to the viability of the Gas Limos Project that were not reflected in the judge's summary of the facts.
#18 We sent a note to counsel seeking assistance with this aspect of the case. This resulted in supplementary written submissions from Mr Macdonald that based the following submissions on the experts' evidence:
"We make the following two general points: a) A degree of professionalism or sophistication in any crime is a factor making that offence more serious. Equally, any element of amateurishness or ineptitude in a crime will make it less serious; and We submit that if a conspiracy to commit murder (even mass murder) is doomed to fail or cannot be shown to be likely to succeed, that factor must be reflected in the sentence that is passed. 2. Linking those general points to the evidence in this case, namely the witness statements of Messrs. Halliday, 'EU' and Todd, whose statement is also in the Appellant's bundle, we invite the Court to conclude that: a) The UK Projects had many elements that were amateurish and none that were professional; Whilst the UK Projects are viable, in the sense that there was potential for damage (possibly severe damage), they suffered from numerous defects that reduced the prospects of any of them being either approved or executed; and c) Even if the UK Projects had been taken to the point of execution, there is a substantial gap between the appellant's intention and the likelihood that anything like his intention would ever have been achieved."
#19 No such submissions were made to the judge. Mr Lawson has provided us with some further information in relation to the expert evidence in this case. Initially the appellant's [Barot's ( by proxy)] proposed Basis of Plea included the following statement:
"An assessment of the efficacy and potential of the Gas Limos and Radiation Projects is set out in the appended witness statements of three experts, David Halliday, Clifford Todd and EU. The Crown does not dispute their conclusions"
So Barot's written basis of plea was signed by Ian Macdonald QC (Grand Knight of the order of Liberty (Portugal) Bencher of the Middle Temple) for Barot & Edmund Lawson QC for the Crown.
I wonder why Barot could not verbally deliver his 'guilty' plea, rather than have it constructed/signed on his behalf by his QC & the QC representing the crown....
Note that the [Barot's] (initial) written basis of plea also included an 'assessment of the efficacy and potential of the Gas Limos and Radiation Projects by none other than Clifford Todd (senior 'sharp cookie' at Fort Halstead & of the '7/7 helpers trial' fame.....)
Note that Ian Macdonald QC for Barot, has the title Grand Knight of the order of Liberty (Portugal) Bencher of the Middle Temple' & Edmund Lawson QC for the Crown had the following previous trial role for the crown: - defending police officers against charges of corruption and of perverting the course of justice during the investigations into the 'Guildford Four' and 'Birmingham Six' bombings
With regard to Inquiries, Edmund Lawson QC had the following notable roles: - representing the Metropolitan Police at the inquest into the death of Princess Diana - representing a number of British Army soldiers at the Saville Inquiry into the events of 'Bloody Sunday' - advising the Metropolitan Police at the inquiry and subsequent Inquest into the shooting of Jean-Charles de Menezes
This post has been edited by Sinclair on Aug 24 2010, 01:46 PM
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