18 Jun Uber Driver Said “Queen and her soldiers” will ‘be in hellfire’
An Uber driver who attacked the police with a Samurai sword hated the Queen, a court heard.
Mohiussunnath Chowdhury, who was born in London to a “close and supportive family” shouted “Allahu Akbar” as police disarmed him outside Buckingham Palace in 2017.
He had largely kept his support for Islamic State and terrorism secret from his family and was self radicalised, the court heard.
“This interest, this self-radicalisation is something we say he chose for himself,”
the prosecutor said.
The court heard he had watched the Channel 4 drama The State, about British citizens going to Syria, and recommended it to his family.
He had searched the internet for Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) beheadings and Jihadi John, jurors were told. He allegedly discussed the Westminster attacker Khalid Masood on WhatsApp, saying: “F— the police.”
On August 19 last year, the defendant allegedly sent emoji of a British soldier in red tunic and bearskin hat, a knife and an “Arabic figure” on WhatsApp.
On the day of the alleged attack, he changed his profile picture to a green bird, in reference to becoming a martyr, jurors heard.
He had left a suicide note to his sister, jurors at the Old Bailey heard, saying, “Tell everyone that I love them and that they should struggle against the enemies of Allah with their lives and their property.
“The Queen and her soldiers will all be in the hellfire they go to war with Muslims around the world and kill them without any mercy. They are the enemies that Allah tells us to fight.”
The defendant, who lives in Luton, denies preparing acts of terrorism and said he only wanted to get killed.
Opening his trial, prosecutor Tim Cray said: “Shortly before 8.30pm on Friday August 25, this defendant was in his motorcar just outside Buckingham Palace in central London.
“Coming down the other way was a marked police van coming from Charing Cross station.
“As the defendant got up to where the police van was coming towards him, he swerved his car through the traffic cones designed to keep the two lanes of traffic apart.”
Two officers got out to investigate, initially thinking the driver was drunk or on drugs, the court heard.
Mr Cray said: “In fact, as the events in the next few minutes and the detailed investigation later were to prove, we say, this defendant had something far more serious in mind.
“It was down to the quick reactions of the police the defendant was stopped. As officers got out of the car, they heard the defendant say words to the effect ‘It’s all a bit f—– up’.
“They then saw him reach for something that turned out to be a sword. There was a short, desperate struggle with the officers trying to get the sword off the defendant while he is punching at them and they are punching at him.
“The defendant is shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’ over and over again so by now the police officers understandably believed they were dealing with a terrorist incident.”
According to the note the suicide note said that the driver expressed “hatred of the Queen and her soldiers” which included the police.
Prosecutor Mr Cray told jurors: “He was saying to his sister that he intended to get to paradise by becoming a martyr fighting ‘the enemies of Allah’.”