More details have emerged regarding the individual who was shot dead by the police during yesterday’s terror-related incident near London Bridge during which two people were murdered and several more were injured.
The Met Police has also released a statement regarding their investigation thus far.
Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said:
“The investigation into the attack near London Bridge continues at a pace.
“Whilst we are still in the early stages of the investigation, at this time, we are not actively seeking anyone else in relation to the attack.
“However, we continue to make fast time enquiries to ensure that no other people were involved in this attack and that there is no outstanding threat to the public.
“As I stated earlier, police were called at 13:58hrs to a stabbing at premises near to London Bridge, EC1. Emergency services attended, including officers from the City of London Police and the Metropolitan Police.
“A male suspect was shot by specialist armed officers, and I can confirm that he died at the scene.
“We are now in a position to confirm the identity of the suspect as 28-year-old Usman Khan (10.03.1991), who had been residing in the Staffordshire area.
“As a result, officers are, tonight, carrying out searches at an address in Staffordshire.
“This individual was known to authorities, having been convicted in 2012 for terrorism offences.
“He was released from prison in December 2018 on licence, and clearly, a key line of enquiry now is to establish how he came to carry out this attack.
“Tragically, two people – a man and a woman – were killed during the attack.
“Three others – a man and two women – were also injured and remain in hospital.
“The circumstances, as we currently understand them, are that the attacker attended an event earlier on Friday afternoon at Fishmonger’s Hall called ‘Learning Together’.
“We believe that the attack began inside before he left the building and proceeded onto London Bridge, where he was detained and subsequently confronted and shot by armed officers.
“Extensive cordons are likely to remain in place for some time and I would ask the public to continue to avoid the area.
“Public safety is our top priority and we are enhancing police patrols in the City and across London.
“I would ask anyone with information, images or footage of the incident that this be shared with the investigation team on the UK Police Image appeal website https://ukpoliceimageappeal.co.uk/.
“I would also appeal to anyone who may have information that could assist the investigation to call police, in confidence on 0800 789 321.
“The public should continue to remain vigilant and report any concerns they have to police.
“If you see something that doesn’t seem right, trust your instincts and ACT by reporting to police, in confidence, at www.gov.uk/ACT.
“In an emergency always dial 999.”
The ‘Learning Together’ event being held at Fishmongers Hall when the incident started is described as: ‘A day to celebrate, connect and collaborate’ according to the Eventbrite website.
At the time of the first 999 call being made to the emergency services, ‘Interactive workshops – Storytelling and creative writing’ were being held inside the event.
At the time of his conviction in 2012, Khan had been ordered to serve at least eight years in prison over his part in a plot to bomb the London Stock Exchange.
He was also convicted after he plotted to build a terrorist training camp on land in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir owned by his family.
Usman Khan was overpowered by brave members of the public before being shot dead by ARV officers
Judge Mr Justice Wilkie gave Khan an indeterminate sentence and said that Khan should not be released until he was no longer a threat to the public.
However, this indeterminate sentence was quashed at the court of appeal in April 2013, and he was instead given a 16-year jail term.
Khan and other plotters from Stoke had also been heard discussing potential attacks in their City, including leaving explosive devices in toilets in pubs and clubs in the Stoke area.
At one point Khan was monitored in conversation about “how to construct a pipe bomb” from a recipe in an al-Qaeda magazine.
The men had also been funding a proposed madrassa – a college for Islamic instruction – abroad, which was to be used for firearms training and which would have been attended by Khan.
The court of appeal judgement said:
“The groups were clearly considering a range of possibilities including fundraising for the establishment of a military training madrassa in Pakistan, where they would undertake training themselves and recruit others to do likewise, sending letter bombs through the post, attacking public houses, attacking a high profile target with an explosive device and a Mumbai-style attack.”
It added that they had “serious long term plans” to send Khan and other recruits for “training and terrorist experience”.
“Should they return to the UK they would do so trained and experienced in terrorism,” the judgement continued.
“They engaged with the others who were contemplating short term attacks in the UK but rightly considered themselves to be more serious jihadis than the others.”
Members of the public who overpowered Khan shortly before the arrival of the police have been applauded for their selfless acts of bravery.
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