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Terrorists jailed in high-tech and sophisticated prosecution


Richard Dart, Jahangir Alom and Imran Mahmood have today been sentenced at the Old Bailey following a guilty plea on 15 March 2013 to engaging in preparation for acts of terrorism contrary to section 5(1) of the Terrorism Act 2006.

Mark Topping, specialist counter-terrorism lawyer for the Crown Prosecution Service, said: "When Richard Dart, Jahangir Alom and Imran Mahmood were making plans for two of them, Dart and Alom, to fly to Pakistan, they did not expect those travels to lead them to the dock at the Old Bailey and jail. But this case serves as another reminder that those who take steps to travel abroad for the purposes of preparing for terrorism can and will be prosecuted here in the UK.

"Although the men did not identify any specific targets for an attack, their determination and intent were very clear. The training that Dart and Alom sought, and which Mahmood attempted to assist with, would have taught Dart and Alom the skills and techniques necessary to commit acts of terrorism both aboard and in the United Kingdom. Mahmood had already undertaken training and was already asking Dart for help in locating a book that would allow him to make home-made explosives.

"This was a prosecution that was based on the most high-tech and sophisticated evidence gathering available. We know that Mahmood received terrorist training abroad because police found high explosive residue on his rucksack when he was searched at the airport.

"But even more impressively, computer experts have been able to retrieve the text that Dart and Mahmood typed out on the laptop in front of them as they sat together and communicated - presumably because they feared that any conversation would be overheard. Thanks to the diligent work of the Metropolitan Police Service, the Crown Prosecution Service was able to attribute this data to the defendants and prove to the court that they were engaging in preparation for acts of terrorism.

"These state-of-the-art techniques not only left the defendants little choice but to plead guilty but also increasingly restrict the ability of terrorists to hide their intentions from the authorities."