Volunteers for a terrorist website spread the hate speeches of a convicted preacher, praised ISIS and called on children as young as 12 to make bombs, a court has heard.
Mohammed Kamali, 31, and Mohammed Amad, 38, allegedly published sermons given by Sheikh Faisal, 56, who was convicted of soliciting murder and stirring up racial hatred in 2003.
Speeches including ‘Jihad, ‘declaration of war’ and ‘no peace with the Jews’ – incited young Muslims to wage violence and kill non-believers.
Kamali of Rochdale, Greater Manchester, and Amad, of Euston, central London, were allegedly among a network of ‘volunteers’ who published Faisal’s speeches on a website called ‘Authentic Tauheed’ between 2012 and 2014, the Old Bailey heard.
Mohammed Kamali (left), 31, and Mohammed Amad (right), 38, allegedly published sermons given by Sheikh Faisal, 56, who was convicted of soliciting murder and stirring up racial hatred in 2003
Kamali denies seven counts of disseminating terrorist material while Amad denies four counts of disseminating terrorist material and one of possessing articles useful for terrorism.
The court heard that the preacher, Abdullah el-Faisal, who calls himself ‘Sheikh’ Faisal, is a convert once called Trevor Forest, and was convicted in 2003 in Britain of soliciting murder and stirring up racial hatred.
After serving his sentence, he moved to Jamaica where he ran a website called Authentic Tauheed [scripture] which bore the statement: ‘Islam does not mean peace’ and added: ‘Renounce shirk [idolatry] and the people of shirk.’
Faisal used his website to host his speeches which he broadcast over Paltalk and were then recorded and noted down by a team of volunteers.
Radical preacher used ISIS leader al-Baghdadi to illustrate talks
One Faisal speech, was illustrated with a picture of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS who was killed on Sunday.
In another speech, Faisal asked: ‘Why is the dawlah [ISIS] more influential and successful? Because al-Qaeda wasn’t brutal enough.’
On Monday July 21 2014 Faisal produced a talk called ‘Is the new Caliphate Valid?’ which was said to be ‘about legitimising ISIS and saying true Muslims should support it.’
‘The reason we are doing this topic is because there are so many people casting doubts on the Khilafah [Caliphate],’ Faisal said.
A week earlier he had suggested that emigrating to a Muslim land was ‘in itself is a proof that you are a real Muslim not a fake Muslim’
He criticised those who ‘live amongst the kuffar [non-believers], who are being oppressed by the kuffar, who live off job seekers allowance and food stamps.’
Another speech, titled ‘The battle for Hearts and Minds – not to be missed’, was broadcast on Christmas Day and also featured the British-based radical preachers Anjem Choudary and Mizanur Rahman, who were convicted of soliciting to murder in 2016.
‘Authentic Tauheed’ also had an ‘official’ Facebook page which advertised: ‘You can read, listen and see posters of the latest dars [sermons] and more.’
One speech on the Facebook site from June 2015 used the title ‘The Empire Strikes Back’, using the Star Wars logo and an image of a masked man with an assault rifle and the black flag of Islam.
Matthew Brook, prosecuting, said that during the speech Faisal would ‘tell the volunteers what quotes from the Koran or Hadiths [sayings of the Prophet] to insert into the notes, thereby making what he was saying appear more religious.’
The notes would then be checked and proof read by another volunteer and uploaded onto the website.
Each volunteer was given a number, and another of the accused, Ahad was allegedly given the number AT3, while Kamali, who rose to be the ’emir’ [leader] of the volunteers, was AT5.
Mr Brook said the speeches ‘would have been understood by some of their readers as encouraging them to join ISIS or to fight violent jihad.’
He said: ‘At the heart of this case is a website called Authentic Tauheed which published a number of speeches by a man who calls himself Sheikh Faisal.
‘He puts himself forward as a teacher of the Islamic faith. Many of his speeches were about religious matters.
‘However, a significant number of his speeches did not restrict themselves to talking about proper religious matters.
‘A significant number of them the Crown allege amounted to terrorist publications because they praised terrorist organisations such as ISIS and encouraged his listeners to support those terrorist organisations and directly or indirectly encouraged terrorist action by encouraging support for a wider violent jihad.
‘The speeches glorified terrorist organisations such as Al-Qaeda and ISIS.
‘They were therefore providing encouragement to their readers to commit or prepare for acts of terrorism.
‘The speeches spoke of violent jihad and how boys or girls and how boys or girls aged 12 could participate as they could make IEDs (improvised explosive devices).’
‘They spoke of how it was compulsory for what Faisal saw as ‘true’ Muslims to participate in jihad and that the scriptures said, if you killed a kaffir [non-believer] they would take your place in hellfire.
‘Sheikh Faisal’s speeches covered the period in 2014 when ISIS rose to prominence in Syria and Iraq and declared a Muslim state.
Faisal was said to have a ‘very narrow definition of who, in his view, was a ‘proper’ Muslim and therefore deserved to live, and who was not a ‘proper’ Muslim, and therefore deserved to die.
The judge, Anuja Dhir QC, told the jury: ‘Some of the material you will see is offensive to all right-minded people no matter what their faith. You must consider all of the evidence and return your verdicts based on that evidence, so please keep an open mind.’
Kamali denies seven counts of dissemination of terrorist publications on the website Authentic Tauheed and on Whatsapp.
Ahad denies four counts of dissemination on the Authentic Tauheed website and on Facebook and Youtube, along with one count of possessing an article useful for terrorism.
The case continues.