Life for Muslim fanatic in soldier kidnap plot who showed son, 5, how to behead British 'infidels'
By ANDY DOLAN – More by this author »
Last updated at 01:07am on 19th February 2008
An Al Qaeda-backed terrorist who plotted to kidnap a British Muslim soldier and behead him "like a pig" even tried to indoctrinate his five-year-old son, it emerged yesterday.
"Islamist fanatic" Parviz Khan was secretly taped ordering little Abrar to swear allegiance to Osama Bin Laden under threat of a beating with a stick.
Khan, 37, also told a friend he wanted his three-year-old daughter to marry a Mujahideen terrorist and give birth to his children.
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Parviz Khan: He gave up smoking, drinking and clubbing to become an Islamist fanatic
Revealed: evil of the father who plotted to behead a Muslim soldier
His plan had been to burn the kidnapped soldier's body and parade his head on a stick as a warning to other Muslims against joining the British Army.
Yesterday Khan was jailed for life for the plot, which a judge said was designed to "strike at the heart" of the British Government.
Mr Justice Henriques recommended he serve a minimum term of 14 years and warned that Khan was a "terrorist in the grip of idealistic extremism" who may never be safe for release.
Leicester Crown Court heard how Khan and the rest of his five-man terror cell – many of them on benefits – were placed under surveillance and his terrace home in a Birmingham suburb was bugged by the security services.
The device recorded Khan telling one of the men: "We give the judgment, we'll then cut it out/off. Off like you cut a pig, man. . . Then you put it on a stick and we say, this is to all Muslimee, man, we likes to, we want to join the (British) army, this is what will happen to you."
He was also recorded asking his son Abrar: "Who do you love?" The child answered: "Sheik Osama Bin Laden. Sheik Abu Hamza" – a reference to the jailed hook-handed Finsbury Park Mosque cleric.
Khan – who was paid £20,000 a year in benefits – also boasted of making non-Muslims "bleed financially" and said Muslims had a duty to "take from the Kuffar" (non-believers).
Khan and three other members of his Birmingham-based cell pleaded guilty ahead of their trial last month.
But full details of his fanaticism could not be reported until the trial of two other alleged members of the group concluded yesterday.
One of those – British-born school attendance monitor Zahoor Iqbal – was Khan's right-hand-man. He grew up in the same street as the family home of Lance Corporal Jabron Hashmi, 24, the first British Muslim soldier to be killed on active duty in the war on terror.
The cell also included Moroccan Hamid Elasmar, 44, who married an English legal secretary in the early Nineties and then secretly showed sickening videos of the 9/11 atrocity to their children when they split.
Khan wanted Basiru Gassama, a Gambian national, to find a Muslim soldier who would then be lured to his death with cocaine during a night out in central Birmingham.
He would be driven to a lock-up garage and beheaded. Footage of the "ghastly" atrocity would be released to Arab TV station Al Jazeera, making "young (Tony) Blair go crazy", Khan told Gassama.
The court heard Khan's terror cell was primarily committed to supplying equipment to Mujahideen insurgents fighting UK forces on the Afghan border with Pakistan.
Under cover of earthquake relief and aid, the gang sent £20,000 in cash and equipment such as laser range-finders, clothing and, ironically, anti-bugging devices to their terror bosses in Pakistan.
But Khan craved a physical role in the killing himself and so hatched the soldier plot.
He was recorded by a listening device at his home as he taught his five-year-old son how to carry out a beheading, and had boasted of meeting Al Qaeda's "number three" on the Afghan-Pakistani border, who had 450 locals ready to commit "martyrdom operations" – some against the UK.
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Detectives from West Midlands Police's Counter Terrorism Unit moved in to arrest the gang in January last year after a year-long surveillance operation.
Although Khan had failed to identify a soldier to target, his home was crammed full of equipment ready for the group's fifth shipment, as well as extremist literature and videos.
Khan was the hub of the cell. Not all the men knew each other, but they all knew Khan.
Detective Superintendent Liam O'Brien said the fanatic had "known connections" with others being investigated for terrorism around the UK.
He said: "I'm convinced that the plot was supported by Al Qaeda. My strong view is that if we hadn't (arrested the men) we would be sitting here now talking about the kidnap and murder of a British soldier."
Khan, of Alum Rock, Birmingham, has refused to attend court throughout proceedings and has shown no remorse.
He pleaded guilty by videolink from prison to engaging in conduct with the intention to commit acts of terrorism, supplying terrorist equipment and two counts of possessing documents useful to a terrorist.
Michael Wolkind, QC, defending, said the plot was a mixture of "fanaticism and fantasy" born out of Khan's 'rage and frustration' at UK foreign policy.
Sentencing, Mr Justice Henriques said: "So rampant your (Khan's) views, excitable your temperament, so persuasive your tongue, and so imbued with energy are you that it is impossible to predict when, if ever, you will be safe for release into the public."
Gassama, 30, of Hodge Hill, Birmingham, admitted failing to alert the authorities to the soldier plot and was sentenced to two years.
Because of time served on remand, Gassama, who was in Britain legally, will now be deported.
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(Clockwise from top left) Mohammed Irfan (four years in jail); Hamid Elasmar (three years and four months); Zahoor Iqbal (seven years), and Basiru Gassama (two years and immediate deportation). They were all sentenced yesterday
Iqbal, a father of two of Perry Barr, Birmingham, was convicted of supplying terrorist equipment but found not guilty of possessing a document or record likely to be useful to a terrorist. He was jailed for seven years.
The final two members of the cell – Mohammed Irfan, 31, of Ward End, and Elasmar, 44, of Edgbaston, both in Birmingham – admitted engaging in conduct with the intention of assisting in acts of terrorism.
Irfan received a four-year jail sentence, Elasmar was jailed for three years and four months. None had previous convictions.
A sixth man, shopkeeper Amjad Mahmood, 32, of Alum Rock, Birmingham, was cleared of failing to alert the authorities to the plot and helping Khan supply equipment to terrorists.
Assistant Chief Constable Anil Patani said the guilty pleas and convictions would force those within the local Muslim community who condemned the arrests 12 months ago to "look in the mirror and reflect on what they have said".
Chief of the General Staff, General Sir Richard Dannatt, praised police and intelligence services and said: "As the head of the British Army I welcome the conviction of a group of men who were prepared to conduct such a cowardly and grotesque attack against members of the Army, based solely on their religion."
'WE'LL CUT IT OFF LIKE A PIG'
The recordings revealed Khan told Basiru Gassama he would carry out the soldier's execution in a mock Islamic court. He told Gassama the atrocity would be carried out after a fatwa – or judgment – was delivered, mirroring previous murders including those of Britons Ken Bigley and Margaret Hassan in Iraq.
Other terms Khan used are explained below*. Only Khan was charged with plotting the beheading because there was no evidence Gassama did anything to help him bring it to fruition.
Part of the transcript suggests Gassama made a half-hearted attempt to make Khan see reason. The recording was made on November 6, 2006.
PK: So, you want to kill Muslims? You want to go to Islamic countries, fight with Kuffar against Muslims? OK, I have some brothers there.
We give like a Bis, we give the judgment ('in the name of God')… we'll then cut it out/off like you cut a pig, man…
Then you put it on a stick and we say, this is to all Muslimee, man, we likes to, we want to join the Kuffar army, this is what will happen to you.
Then we throw the body, burn it, send the video to the chacha, the chacha can release it there. These people gonna go crazy.
BG: what happens. True man.
PK: These people will go mad. This is what they call you will terrorize them, they will go crazy. They will start searching.
Are they London, Birmingham, Newcastle, where are these people? They killed one of our soldiers in country.
They've gone into countries, they're in our countries. They'll go crazy, Achi.
BG: True man.
PK: Then all these other people who slowly joining the British Army, these Pakistani, these Afghan, these Gambia. They gonna say, No, man, I don't want that. Look like, chop him up, man!
We don't to join this army. At least we can stop them from doing the Haram.
We, first, we give them da'wa. Don't join the army, it is haram. Wait till you go into Kuffar.
They're not listening. So now we have to use force. Obviously, if they were insa'an (believers) they would listen to our word and listen to the…
BG: Well you know that's true man, brother, brother, man, brother, this is please man, not…
PK: Achi, all I say to you is set it up. Even you don't have to do it yourself. How about that drug dealer, brothers.
Not brothers, donkeys, I call them, because they're drug dealers they will go with him, one day, they do deal, if you bring anything back.
Then the next time you'll take him Broad Street, wine and dine and girl and things. After that they don't get friendly.
Third time, I'm gonna say, Achi lets go for a meal, man. When they for a meal, they're sitting/they sit him down. And when they come out, or when they're eating the meal. That's when me and three four brothers come in and say when you come out we, we, we give you a lift. But we don't give 'em a lift, we give him a lift to Jahannama (hell). Game over.
That way nobody know. Then we don't, we've got enough places man. We just hang him up. We've got enough brothers' own garages man. Night time, they're got a big shutters.
Hang him up, man. Just bring the thing. The chef style, say Bis Millah, and let's do it, man.
PK: Thefirst thing we need is/his cards.
BG: His card.
PK: We need his card, and especially this card, we need his picture… They know these people, they have, eh, the link. Then they gonna go even more crazy.
* Kuffar – non-believers.
Chacha – terrorist godfathers.
Achi – brother.
Haram – forbidden.
Da'wa – prayer.
Bis Millah – in the name of God.
Inshallah – God willing.