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Last Updated: Monday, 9 July 2007, 15:45 GMT 16:45 UK
Profile: Hussain Osman
Four men have been convicted of a botched attempt to repeat the devastation of the 7 July attacks in London. Hussain Osman - who attacked a train approaching Shepherd's Bush - fled the country, but was tracked down through his mobile phone calls.

Hussein Osman
Born July 1978, Ethiopia
Real name Hamdi Isaac Adus
Travelled to Italy 1992, stayed with brother
Arrived UK 1996 using name Hussein Osman
Married and a father
Carried out attack near Shepherd's Bush Tube

Hussain Osman was born Hamdi Issac Adus in Ethiopia in 1978 but moved to Italy at the age of 14 and from there travelled to Britain. It would be in Italy that the police would finally catch up with him.

On his arrival in the late 1990s he claimed his name was Hussain Osman and he was from war-torn Somalia. He later admitted this was a deliberate deception designed to increase his chances of claiming asylum.

And like the way he settled in the UK, so much of Osman's story remains a mystery. When and how exactly he met Muktar Ibrahim and Yassin Omar remains unclear - but they all knew each other by early 2004.

Osman attended a key camping trip to the Lake District in the spring of 2004 - a police officer who took photographs of the group saw them running around in what appeared to be an organised way.

Osman was also said to attend Islamist meetings at Speaker's Corner in London's Hyde Park where he would harangue the crowds about Islam.

At the time of the bombings, Osman was living with his wife and children in a block of flats in Stockwell, south London - and a torn up picture of his bride was found in his abandoned rucksack after his bomb failed to explode at Shepherd's Bush.

At his home police found evidence of extremist material, including speeches by preachers involved in radicalisation and instructions for how to make a suicide bomb vest.

Fled the country

Osman fled the scene of his attack - first running along the track, going through someone's house and passing the entrance to the BBC's London headquarters.

Ripped up photo found in Shepherds Bush bomber's rucksack
This torn photograph of Osman and his wife was found in his rucksack

He boarded a bus where he was captured on CCTV - a crucial breakthrough in identifying him.

Later he arrived in Brighton, stayed a few days, before heading for Rome via the Paris Eurostar. He was able to evade detection by using his brother's passport.

But security services in the UK and Italy were able to trace him to his brother's Rome apartment by careful analysis of the movements of his mobile phone - leading to his eventual arrest on 29 July.

Police were apparently on his trail in Stockwell on 22 July when they mistakenly shot dead Jean Charles de Menezes.

When Osman's trial began in January 2007 he preferred leisurewear and designer labels to suits and ties.

But his mental state was fragile and at one point he suffered a breakdown - standing up in the dock and ranting and raving. He was escorted out of the court but the trial continued.

Admission to prison officer

Osman's defence had been the statement he gave to Italian police - that the event had been an elaborate hoax to draw attention to the injustices of the Iraq war.

Extradited: Osman on his way back to the UK
Extradited: Osman on his way back to the UK
At the same time, he could not explain why he had no specific plan as to their escape route once the hoax attacks had been carried out.

The absence of an escape plan undermined his claims that they were not intending to die in the attacks.

But in the early hours of 8 June, Osman suddenly changed his mind.

He approached prison officer Ben Murray to talk about co-defendant and plot leader Muktar Ibrahim.

Mr Murray said: "Osman told me Ibrahim was the brains behind making the bombs and trying to destroy parts of London.

"Osman stated that Ibrahim had bullied him into making the bombs and the distribution of such items.

"Osman said to me that he wanted to see someone about giving evidence against his co-defendants or going QE (Queen's Evidence)."

Osman had left it too late to turn Queen's Evidence. Summing up, prosecutors told the jury that Osman's decision not to take the stand exposed his desperate claims in Rome - that the attacks were a hoax - for the lies that they were.

Hussein Osman's escape route




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