Ahmed Hassan, 18, pictured in a court sketch, allegedly told immigration officials he had been forced to train ‘to kill’ by Isis
The Parsons Green bomber was moved by ‘anger and hatred’ when he planted 400g of explosives on a packed Tube train, a court heard today.
Ahmed Hassan, 18, told his mentor Katie Cable that it was his ‘duty to hate Britain’, the country he blamed for the death of his father in Iraq, the court heard.
He had also told Home Office officials he had been ‘trained to kill’ by Islamic State when he claimed asylum in 2016.
But in his evidence to the Old Bailey, he said that was a lie and he only wanted to cause a fire, and not an explosion, when he planted a homemade device on the train in West London last September.
In her closing speech, prosecutor Alison Morgan said: ‘He may have been troubled by events in his past. He may well be motivated by circumstances he may now not admit to you.
‘What he did that day was an act of anger and hatred designed to cause death and destruction of property.’
She said Hassan ‘left nothing to chance in the preparation of this attack’.
This image of Hassan with a knife taken in his bedroom was also released by Scotland Yard
The lounge at Hassan’s home address is seen in this image issued by the Metropolitan Police
A sofa the in conservatory behind which a bag containing a trace of TATP was discovered
A rucksack and contents in Hassan’s possession upon his arrest at the Port of Dover in Kent
‘It is a matter of luck that there was not a full explosion that day, not because of any deliberate intention on the part of the defendant to cause just a fire.’
Ms Morgan replayed CCTV footage of the fireball ripping through the carriage on September 15 last year. She said passengers had been ‘terrified’, with some suffering serious injury.
She asked jurors to imagine what would have happened if 400g of TATP had fully exploded, sending 2.2kg of screwdrivers, knives, nuts and bolts flying at high velocity.
‘Whatever story he tells you in the witness box, the fact that he was angry with this country was clear to those who met him, especially Ms Cable … he described it as his duty or right to hate this country and he blamed this country for the death of his father.’
Hassan said that people used to make up stories in the Jungle camp in Calais (pictured in 2015)
A bedroom wardrobe with a container with traces of hydrogen peroxide found on top (left) and the door to Hassan’s bedroom (right)
Pictured are packs of partially empty drill bits which were used as shrapnel in the device
A blue vase similar to one found in the device outside by the conservatory at Hassan’s home
A photograph of the smoke-ridden District line carriage shortly after the device exploded
She suggested Hassan lied to the jury when he claimed it was all part of a fantasy and an act of ‘boredom and attention-seeking’.
Ms Morgan said: ‘He may well have lied to all those people for two years but he may well also be lying to you.
‘Lying to you about the truth of his past with Islamic State for the obvious reason that if he was trained to kill by IS that would tell you something about his mindset and who he really is and where he has really come from.
‘You can be sure it was not an act of attention-seeking or boredom. This was someone who wanted to cause death and damage and make good his escape.’
Hassan allegedly packed a bucket with TATP explosives and shrapnel and left it on the train
Ahmed Hassan is pictured waiting at the Port of Dover in Kent after arriving there by train
Hassan is pictured on board a Southern train to Brighton after the incident on the Tube
The kitchen timer used as an initiator mechanism, in addition to a battery and a halogen bulb
Hassan allegedly took the largest Tupperware container, pictured above, from his foster parents’ kitchen to store the 300g of TATP which made up the main charge for the device
Ms Morgan said Hassan was ‘calculated and clever’ in all his preparations.
When he looked up the news on the BBC website afterwards, Hassan told jurors he was reassured it was a ‘minor incident’.
But Ms Morgan said he will have learned that he had ‘failed’ in his intention.
Hassan has denied attempted murder and using the chemical compound TATP to cause an explosion that was likely to endanger life.
The contents of the ‘Mother of Satan’ bomb allegedly prepared by Hassan then put on the Tube
In addition to nuts and bolts, he is accused of placing knives inside the device to be shrapnel
Hassan, who was living with foster parents at the time, is pictured using a cash machine
Shrapnel would be ‘ejected at high speed’ to ‘increase the potential for harm’ the jury was told
Other items Hassan is said to have piled into the explosive included screwdrivers
The device ‘has the potential to cause damage to property and or serious harm’, the jury heard
The teenager’s defence barrister said those who knew him saw a ‘sincere, positive boy’.
Tim Moloney QC told jurors staff at Barnardo’s had said he was a ‘very polite’ young person ‘seeking help, looking forward to the future’.
Rather than setting out to commit acts of terror, Hassan went from being a ‘troubled young man’ to doing well at college, he said.
Even as late as June 2017, he was busy researching potential university places at Kingston and Royal Holloway.
The scene of devastation was left behind after the device partially detonated on the train
Hassan is said to have gone to a Sports Direct in Ashford where bought a backpack and clothes
Hassan had not dried out the bomb-making chemicals before use, an expert said
The suspected bomber is pictured in Dover in September after travelling from London by train
CCTV cameras caught the moment the Hassan was arrested at the Port of Dover in Kent
The suspected bomber was captured as he was placed in the back of a waiting police van
Mr Moloney said: ‘It seems to me the prosecution suggest there may be truth that maybe he was with IS and it’s possible we may never know.
‘That’s not good enough for me. We say that if he was with Isis (another name for Islamic State), would he have said that and raised that potential with the Home Office and draw attention to himself in that way?
‘If he was with Isis he would have had many opportunities to do what he wanted. Making TATP is a really straightforward process that can be done in a day.
‘You have to judge this case on the evidence and nothing else – not speculation, fear or emotion.’