July 6th, 2007 05:25 EST
U.K. Trio jailed for using internet to incite murder
Three men have this afternoon been sentenced to a total of 24 years' in jail after they admitted using the internet to incite murder.
Younis Tsouli, Waseem Mughal and Tariq al-Daour had initially denied terrorism charges, but changed their plea to guilty more than two months in to their trial at Woolwich Crown Court.
The trio are the first people in the UK to be prosecuted for incitement of terrorist murder using the internet.
23-year old Tsouli, was jailed for 10 years; 23-year old Mughal, for seven and a half years?; and 20-year-old al-Daour to six and a half years?.
The men were arrested by counter terrorism detectives during October 2005, after they purchased a range of web sites using stolen identities and credit card details which they then used to publish extreme propaganda and material produced by Al-Qaeda.
The extreme and explicit material was crafted to incite and recruit suicide bombers in Iraq and elsewhere who may be prepared to kill so-called disbeliever enemies on a global scale.
Tsouli, of Richmond Way, W12, used the internet name 'irhaby007' - translated as 'terrorist007'. He was responsible for updating the websites, while Mughal, of Railway Street, Chatham, Kent, assisted. Mughal and al-Daour, of Queens Court, W2, provided the stolen identities and credit card details to Tsouli.
Tsouli was also responsible for the setting up and administration of a chat room forum used by supporters of Al-Qaeda from which explosives and weapons manuals could be downloaded.
DAC Peter Clarke, head of the Met's Counter Terrorism Command, said:
"These three men, by their own admission, were encouraging others to become terrorists and murder innocent people. This is the first successful prosecution for inciting murder using the internet, showing yet again that terrorist networks are spanning the globe.
"Tsouli, Mughal and al-Daour used stolen identities, false credit card details and hidden chat room forums. Their terrorist tradecraft was sophisticated, but nevertheless defeated by this investigation.
"Detectives were faced with an enormous challenge - to decode and decipher a staggering quantity of computer data and websites. They should be justly proud of their efforts in this case."