Page last updated at 17:25 GMT, Tuesday, 14 October 2008 18:25 UK

Terror accused 'just prankster'

A man accused of discussing a plot to blow up British National Party members told a court he was only a "prankster".

Waris Ali and Dabeer Hussain, both 18, deny possessing a terrorism manual to research bomb-making techniques.

The school friends, from Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, are accused of looking at bomb "recipes" on a terrorism manual called the Anarchists' Cookbook.

Mr Ali told Leeds Crown Court he looked up the manual on the internet because he wanted to make smoke bombs.

He told the jury he also became interested in making smoke bombs using chemicals and he looked up how to make them on the Anarchists' Cookbook.

'Racist party'

Asked why he looked at the manual he said: "It was like the book all pranksters are supposed to have.

"You can't make anything without looking at that book. I had never heard of it. I didn't really know what it was so I went looking for it."

The teenager told the court he also liked to experiment with fireworks.

He said he strapped rockets together with matches and sparklers to produce an improvised device which he lit at a local park.

Members of the jury laughed as he explained how one device was caught in the wind and struck the door of a house forcing him to "do a runner".

Mr Ali was said to nurture a particular dislike of the British National Party, the court heard.

He told the jury: "I just thought they were a racist party. I don't like them and I don't like what they stand for."

Osama 'crazy'

Earlier, he told the court he was interested in debating and politics while at school.

He said he was often pulled up by his teachers for making inappropriate comments about the war in Iraq and President Bush.

One one occasion he wrote the words "die Bush, die" and also made references to Osama bin Laden.

His attendance deteriorated and he was eventually excluded from Westborough High School, only returning to complete his GCSE exams, the court was told.

He said he became frustrated that he could not debate controversial issues such as the War on Terror, Iraq and Afghanistan.

In court, he described Osama bin Laden as "the craziest guy in the world" and said he had never been sympathetic to his cause.

The trial continues.

Youths 'discussed BNP bomb plot'
06 Oct 08 |  Bradford

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