Page last updated at 19:38 GMT, Wednesday, 10 September 2008 20:38 UK

Seven men face bomb plot retrial

Tanvir Hussain, Abdulla Ahmed Ali and Assad Sarwar
Hussain, Ali and Sarwar were found guilty of conspiracy to murder

Prosecutors are to seek a retrial of seven British men who were accused of a plot to blow up planes flying from the UK to North America with liquid bombs.

Three men were found guilty of conspiracy to murder but the jury was unable to decide whether they and four other men had planned to target planes.

The men had denied plotting to bring down planes from Heathrow with home-made bombs disguised as soft drinks.

The Crown Prosecution Service will put a retrial application before a court.

The CPS said the seven men should face a retrial on every count the jury, which was discharged on Monday, had failed to agree on.

Director of public prosecutions Sir Ken Macdonald QC said: "This will include a count that each defendant conspired to detonate improvised explosive devices on transatlantic passenger aircraft.

"We shall be returning to court to make this application in due course."

He added he had reached the decision after "careful consideration" with the head of his counter-terrorism division and counsel.

Making videos

The seven men are Abdulla Ahmed Ali, 27, Assad Sarwar, 28, Tanvir Hussain, 27, Ibrahim Savant, 27, Arafat Waheed Khan, 27, Waheed Zaman, 24, and Umar Islam, 30.

Clockwise from top left Arafat Waheed Khan, Ibrahim Savant, Umar Islam and Waheed Zaman.
The jury could not reach any decision on the charges against these four men

On Monday, after a five-month trial at London's Woolwich Crown Court, Ali, of Walthamstow, east London, Sarwar, of High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, and Hussain, of Leyton, east London, were found guilty of conspiracy to murder. They have yet to be sentenced.

The jury was unable to reach a verdict on whether they and London residents Mr Savant, of Stoke Newington, Mr Islam, of Plaistow, and Mr Zaman and Mr Khan, both of Walthamstow, had conspired to detonate explosives on aircraft.

The jurors also failed to decide whether or not Mr Savant, Mr Islam, Mr Zaman and Mr Khan were guilty of conspiracy to murder, and those four men also face a possible retrial on that count.

All seven had pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit public nuisance by making videos threatening bombings, but none of the men has yet been sentenced for that offence.

Political protest

Ali, Sarwar and Hussain told the jury they had wanted to create a political spectacle in protest at British foreign policy.

It would have included fake suicide videos and devices that would frighten, rather than kill, the public.

Prosecutors alleged the men had been planning to carry liquid explosives on to planes at Heathrow, knowing the devices would evade airport security checks.

However the court heard the explosives had never been fully constructed and tickets had neither been bought nor plans to travel made.

Sweeping airport restrictions on liquids in hand luggage were brought in following the men's arrests in August 2006.

An eighth defendant in the Woolwich Crown Court trial - Mohammad Gulzar, 27, of Barking, east London - was cleared of all charges.




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