Tag Archives: bomb

Black Country mosque bomber Pavlo Lapshyn jailed for life

A racist terrorist who planted bombs at three mosques in the Black Country and murdered a man was today jailed for life.

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Pavlo Lapshyn will spend a minimum of 40 years behind bars after mounting his campaign of terror across the West Midlands.

His sentencing was delayed after a suspect package was found in the court sparking an evacuation of the Old Bailey.

Staff and members of the public were told to leave the building shortly after 1pm while investigations were carried out.

After the unnamed item was checked thought officials said it was not a danger to the public.

No –one was detained in relation to the drama.

Jailing Lapshyn at the Old Bailey today, Judge Nigel Sweeney said: “You clearly hold extreme right wing, white supremacist views.

“Such views, hatred and motivation, are abhorrent to all right thinking people and have no place whatsoever in our multi faith, multi-cultural society.

“You were intent on finding a Muslim to murder, it seems to me you acted alone and were motivated by your extreme, appalling prejudices.”

West Midlands Police footage of the interview with jailed terrorist Pavlo Lapshyn.

The 25-year-old Ukranian had wanted to start a race war and told police he targeted his victims simply because they were not white.

But today Lapshyn, who was described by police as ‘extremely dangerous’, was handed the lengthy prison term.

The nail bomber’s 90-day campaign of terror began just five days after he entered the country.

He stabbed Mohammed Saleem three times in the back, killing the 82-year-old as he walked home from evening prayers in Birmingham on April 29.

On June 21, he targeted Walsall’s Aisha Mosque in Rutter Street, Caldmore, when he planted explosive devices in a child’s lunch box at the mosque gates.

Then seven days later he placed a bomb on a roundabout near Wolverhampton Central Mosque.

But his most serious attack was at Kanz-ul-Iman mosque in Tipton, where he packed hundreds of nails in a bomb on a railway embankment next to the mosque’s car park.

Pavlo Lapshyn is seen blowing up a tree believed to be in Ukraine in footage released by West Midlands Police.

Worshippers were only saved from serious harm as Friday afternoon prayers were being held an hour later than usual on the first Friday of Ramadan.

Lapshyn said he had planted the bombs because he wanted to ‘increase racial hatred’.

On Monday Lapshyn admitted murdering Mr Saleem, causing an explosion on July 12 and engaging in conduct in preparation of terrorist acts between April 24 and July 18.

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Man admits pensioner murder and mosque attack

A Ukrainian student with a hatred of “non-whites” pleads guilty to stabbing an 82-year-old grandfather to death and causing explosions near mosques in the West Midlands.

Pavlo Lapshyn

Pavlo Lapshyn

Pavlo Lapshyn, a postgraduate student from Dnipropetrovsk, in Ukraine, who moved to Birmingham after winning a work placement contest, was charged with the murder of Mohammed Saleem as he walked home from a mosque.

Mr Saleem, the pensioner and father-of-seven, was stabbed three times just yards from his house as he walked home alone after worship on 29 April. He was described as “a much-loved and respected community member” in a family statement at the time.

Twenty-five-year-old Lapshyn also admitted to causing an explosion on 12 July near the Kanzal Iman mosque in Tipton and planting bombs near mosques in Walsall and Wolverhampton, researching locations to plant bombs and buying chemicals on the internet to make explosives.

He will reappear at the Old Bailey for sentencing on Friday 25 October.

Mohammed Saleem

Mohammed Saleem

The court heard how the self-confessed racist, from Dnipropetrovesk but in the UK on a year-long visa had “acted alone.”

Detective Superintendent Shaun Edwards, from the West Midlands Counter Terrorism Unit, said: “In interview Lapshyn stressed he was acting alone – not part of a wider cell or influenced by any group – and was keen to take credit for masterminding and carrying out the attacks.”

Mr Lapshyn would undoubtedly have gone on to ramp-up his bombing campaign, had he not been caught, the court heard.

Mr Edwards added: “We found part-made devices in Lapshyn’s room – plus chemicals and bomb-making equipment – so it is clear he planned to place further devices with the intention of killing or maiming innocent members of the public.

Nails collected from the blast site in Tipton

Nails collected from the blast site in Tipton

“All three of the devices he detonated were powerful but his final attack in Tipton was the first to feature shrapnel and nails.

“He placed this near the mosque’s car-park with the intention of hitting worshippers as they arrived for prayers – thankfully the service had been put back an hour so the mosque was largely deserted when the bomb went off.”

Mr Lapshyn planted the first of his improvised explosive devices – hidden in a child’s lunchbox – by gates outside Walsall’s Aisha Mosque in Rutter Street on 21 June and followed that seven days later by detonating an IED on a roundabout near Wolverhampton Central Mosque.

And on 12 July he packed hundreds of nails into a bomb placed on a rail embankment near Kanzul Iman Masjid mosque in Binfield Street, Tipton, which sent debris flying across the car-park and into a residential street.

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Detectives investigating the initial Walsall blast trawled many hours of CCTV and managed to identify Lapshyn arriving at the scene with his deadly package and leaving minutes later empty handed.

More security camera scrutiny enabled officers to plot the Ukraine Metallurgical Academy graduate’s route on a bus to Birmingham and an earlier service taking him into the city centre from Small Heath.

The Ukrainian had been in the UK on a sponsored work placement at a software firm in the Small Heath area of Birmingham when he was arrested on suspicion of Mr Saleem’s murder nearby on 20 July.

Speaking outside the court, Assistant Chief Constable Marcus Beale described Lapshyn as “dangerous and evil.”

He said: “I hope they (Mr Saleem’s family) get some solace from it. You must feel for them when they lose their dad in such circumstances.

“But hopefully it will be one small step in coming to terms with what has been an awful, awful time.”

He added: “He (Lapshyn) was extremely dangerous. It is of great relief that he is not free to walk the streets any further.

“He’s a dangerous, evil and completely ill-informed man. There is no justification for the crimes he committed or the intent that he has.

“He was operating alone, he was a lone actor.”

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Bomb blast debris found near Wolverhampton Central Mosque

Bomb blast debris has been found near a mosque in Wolverhampton, as police continued to question two foreign students over the West Midlands-wide terrorism investigation.

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Bomb blast debris has been found near a mosque in Wolverhampton, as police continued to question two foreign students over the West Midlands-wide terrorism investigation.

Wolverhampton Central Mosque was last night evacuated just hours after detectives and an Army bomb disposal unit swooped on an industrial park in Birmingham where the two suspects were arrested.

Today they revealed that they had found the “seat of an explosion” and debris, on the Five Ways roundabout.

Assistant Chief Constable Marcus Beale, who is leading the investigation, said today: “Officers searching the area have found the seat of an explosion and debris on the island near the mosque.

“The investigation is being led by specialist officers and staff from our Counter Terrorism Unit who are being supported by a range of departments from across the force.

“We recognise the impact news of the latest find will have on the communities of Wolverhampton and further afield. We’re working hard to complete our enquiries so that the area can be returned to normality.

“We are keen to hear from people who may have seen anyone acting suspiciously on or near to the roundabout on the night of the 27 or the morning of 28 June,” said ACC Beale.

“Whether people feel the information is important or not, I would urge them to contact us so that we can assess that information.”

Detectives were today quizzing the Ukranian men – aged 22 and 25 – on suspicion of causing the recent bomb blasts at mosques in Walsall and Tipton.

Police said they were acting on fresh intelligence about a suspected bomb plot at the Wolverhampton mosque in Waterloo Road as they revealed they were heading to the scene last night.

They had been called to the mosque on June 28 to investigate reports of a noise, but found nothing untoward. New information yesterday sparked a major police operation as officers searched the mosque and surrounding area for signs of any device.

Nothing was found at the mosque, which has now reopened for worship.

They evacuated the building at 8pm yesterday. Military bomb disposal and specialist search teams also descended on the mosque.

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Security has been heightened at mosques around the region and police have stepped up patrols to ensure a higher visibility presence on the streets.

Officers insisted the Wolverhampton evacuation – which involved cordoning off parts of Stafford Road, Cannock Road and Dunstall Road – was to ensure safety and security of the community. Superintendent Jan Thomas-West from Wolverhampton Police said: “We had a report of a noise on June 28.

“Nothing untoward was found at that particular time. We received information which resulted in an attendance at the mosque.”

The message from mosque leaders was one of calm as they came to terms with the day of drama. Prayers were redirected from the Waterloo Road mosque to nearby Dunstall Hill Community Centre, where senior mosque member Mahmood Khan said relations with police and the community were extremely positive. He added: “We’re united against this.”

In Birmingham, parts of the city had earlier been brought to a standstill and hundreds of workers were evacuated from software engineering company Delcam – where the two suspects were arrested at 2.50pm.

Detectives, an Army bomb disposal unit and police dog team carried out investigations late into the night. The first man was arrested after being spotted by officers working in the local area, and the second was arrested nearby. It is believed an officer on routine patrol spotted one of the men and initially identified him as a suspect in the Walsall mosque bomb inquiry.

The pair, who remained in custody today, are university engineering students and are on work placement with Delcam.

Clive Martell, chief executive of Delcam, said: “We had two men arrested on our premises. They are both Eastern European and they are here as overseas students on work placement and are not employees of ours.”

He added: “This is completely unexpected and we are fully co-operating with the police.”

It is believed the pair did not know each other before they met at the company.

The first terror investigation was launched after a handmade device exploded by the Aisha Mosque and Islamic Centre in Rutter Street, Caldmore, on June 21. The road was sealed off and around 150 residents evacuated from their homes, as white-suited forensic officers scoured the scene for clues.

Police reveal details of the arrests at the scene

A 75-year-old man from Walsall who was arrested on June 27 in connection with the investigation has been eliminated from inquiries and faces no further action.

Then on July 12, counter terrorism police, the army and bomb disposal teams were sent to the Kanz-ul-Iman Muslim Welfare Association Central Jamia Mosque in Tipton after nearby residents heard a loud bang.

The blast, which resulted in nails and debris flying into nearby buildings, happened at around 1pm when there should have been hundreds of people inside the mosque – but the first Friday prayers of Ramadan had been put back by an hour so there were just three people present.

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What the EDL had to say about the latest bomb find

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Man urgently sought in connection with attack on Walsall mosque (updated)

POLICE have today (Wednesday) released pictures of a man they urgently want to speak to in connection with the attack on the Aisha Mosque in Walsall last month.

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The images – released to the public as part of a major investigation by the West Midlands Counter Terrorism Unit – show a man, believed to be white, in his 20s or 30s and of slim to medium build.

Parts of a device were recovered from the vicinity of the Rutter Street mosque after worshippers alerted police to suspicious items found nearby. Local residents reported hearing a loud bang shortly before prayers late on the evening of Friday 21 June.

www.west-midlands.police.uk 2013-7-17 17 33 11Officers from the West Midlands Counter Terrorism Unit have since been conducting a large and detailed investigation which includes the recovery of many hours of CCTV pictures from the area and beyond.

A 75-year-old man from Walsall arrested on 27 June in connection with this investigation has been eliminated from enquiries and faces no further action.

Detectives urgently need to identify the person in these pictures.

Anyone with any information that could help establish his identity is asked to contact the dedicated hotline 0800 096 1233 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

If you see this man you are urged not to approach him but to call 999.

Assistant Chief Constable Marcus Beale appeals to the public for their assistance:

Update 18.07.13

BREAKING NEWS: Two men arrested in connection with Walsall mosque blast

A 25-YEAR-OLD man and 22-year-old man, both Eastern European, have been arrested in connection with the explosion near Aisha Mosque in Walsall on 21 June.

They were arrested just before 3pm today (Thursday 18 July) and are being questioned by detectives from the West Midlands Counter Terrorism Unit.

An area in Talbot Way, Small Heath is being searched and as a precaution there has been an evacuation of a number of properties.

A number of road closures are in place:

– Small Heath Highway at Golden Hillock Road (into city)
– Golden Hillock Road at Small Heath Highway (out of city)
– Coventry Road at Talbot Road

More information will follow shortly. [ENDS]

Interesting.

Interesting.


Nails found after ‘terror’ explosion near Tipton mosque

Debris and nails were found near a mosque in Tipton following an explosion that was this afternoon being treated as terrorism.
Police at Coneygree Road in Tipton which has been closed
Police at Coneygree Road in Tipton which has been closed
 Police evacuated a large part of the town after a loud bang was heard by residents living near the Kanz-ul-Iman Muslim Welfare Association Central Jamia Mosque in Binfield Street.

Residents said shortly after that they had discovered debris and nails.

Roads closures included Sedgley Road East at Dudley Port, Dudley Port at Tudor Court, Jays Avenue at Tudor Court/Tudor Street, Park Lane East at Slater Street, Crompton Road at Martin Road and Victoria Road at Park Street.

Officers were called to Binfield Street just after 1pm and a cordon was set up immediately.

There are no reports of any injuries, but police have evacuated the area as a precaution.

Sedgley Road East near Binfield Street which has been closed after residents heard a loud bang
Sedgley Road East near Binfield Street which has been closed after residents heard a loud bang

Wasin Kahn, a member of the congregation spoke of how he heard the explosion.

The 23-year-old who lives on Park Lane East in Tipton  said: “I heard a loud bang, at first I didn’t think anything of it.

“The police were called and they evacuated the mosque and some houses at the back. There are around 20 police cars here, we just don’t know what’s going on.

A resident of nearby Crompton Road said she was alerted to the incident when she saw police cars racing past her home, she said: “I was about to go out shopping at around 2pm and saw a number of police cars flying down Victoria Road and I thought ‘what’s going on here?’ “I didn’t think much of it then I got a call from friends asking if I was safe.”

John Brown who works at The MOT Bay on Sedgley Road East said: “I heard a bang and it sounded like a gas canister going off but we’re next to a tyre place and I thought it could have been a tyre that had blown.

“As soon as I saw the police coming down here and the streets being sealed off I knew it was something serious. The police helicopter is hovering above us.”

Commercial manager Mark Watton was just yards away when he heard ‘an almighty bang’.

Mr Watton, aged 49, from Bloxwich, was working on his late mother’s house in Coneygre Road at the time.

“The house is the other side of the railway embankment from the mosque, probably less than 50 years away,” he said.

“I was working at the house and heard this very loud bang. It was just after 1pm. I rushed outside but couldn’t see anything or anyone. I popped out to get some spare parts a few moments later and when I came back, 20 minutes later, the whole area was sealed off by the police.”

Article

Finally ...

..Finally, not being classed as a “hate crime”

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More on the continuing wave of racist attacks against mosques here


So a bomb outside a mosque isn’t designed to “terrorise”?

Seems like plod and the state are being very selective with their words concerning racist or possible racist attacks since drummer Lee Rigby died. If an army barracks/ Govt building was firebombed or an explosive device was found nearby they would hardly call it a “hate crime”…

Police call home-made bomb outside Walsall’s Ashia Mosque a ‘hate crime’ and draft in counter-terror police

Remains of the bomb were handled by different people before committee rang police on suspicious item

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Counter-terror police have been called in to assist with a major hate crime investigation after a small home-made bomb that had exploded near a mosque was discovered on Saturday night.

Around 150 people were evacuated from their homes, and 80 had to stay in temporary accommodation in the Caldmore area of Walsall on Saturday night to allow bomb disposal experts to make the device safe.

West Midlands Police confirmed the blast heard by residents on Friday “appeared to be consistent” with the device exploding. The remains of the device were not discovered until the following evening, when a member of the public found the remains. No one was injured and the device caused minimal damage.

The device was discovered in an alleyway adjoining the Aisha Mosque and Islamic Centre in Rutter Street on Saturday by a local man who took it home and showed it to his wife.

Later, the mosque’s imam also took the remains home before anyone realised their significance. Eventually members of the committee and local residents gathered at the mosque and decided to call police about the item, which reportedly contained a battery.

Assistant Chief Constable Sharon Rowe said on Sunday evening: “The force is taking this attack against the mosque very seriously and we have a major investigation under way.

“To that end, I have called in support from all over the force, including the West Midlands Counter Terrorism Unit, which has a number of experts supporting the inquiry.

“Specialist investigators have been working all day and continue to ensure that we maximise every opportunity from the crime scene.”

She added: “At this stage we are keeping an open mind on a motive, but have recorded it as a hate crime.”

She described a hate crime as: “Any criminal act committed against a person or property that is motivated by the offender’s hatred of people because of their gender, race, religion, disability or sexual orientation.”

In a bid to reassure the community of their safety Walsall police have been patrolling the area, despite believing that the planting of the device was an isolated incident.

Zia Ul-Haq, a committee member and spokesman for the mosque, told BBC WM committee members contacted police at about 10.15pm because the device looked suspicious.

“It was found by one of our worshippers who after midday prayer was going home, and he had a look and it looked suspicious, so he picked it up and took it home.

“He showed it his wife and his wife said, ‘Well, it looks like something suspicious so you should take it to the mosque’. So he brought it to the mosque but unfortunately there was nobody responsible in the mosque so he took it back home.

“Then he brought it back in the evening and then our imam had a look at it, and he took it home because nobody thought it was that serious.

“I said it looks suspicious and we decided to call the police. As soon as the police came they said we should not have handled it.”

Mr Ul-Haq thanked officers and the local council for the measures they had taken to support the community in the aftermath of the discovery.

He said: “They have taken this very seriously and they have supported us wholeheartedly and we are very grateful to the police and the local authority.

“We are not suspecting anybody, we are leaving it in the good hands of the police. We have beautiful relationships with the local community and we’ve never had any trouble at all at our mosque.”

Mr Ul-Haq told the BBC that the mosque had been a part of the community for more than 40 years and held strong relations with communities of all faiths, often holding open days for non-Muslims.

“We never ever thought there was going to be a problem and people are still finding it hard that somebody could have targeted us.”

Bomb disposal experts from the Royal Logistic Corps attended the scene to ensure the device was safe and forensic teams spent several hours conducting a detailed search for evidence.

About 80 people evacuated from the area as a precautionary measure overnight were given shelter by Walsall Council, while 70 residents stayed with friends or family.

Councillor Zahid Ali, portfolio holder for public health and protection, said the community was standing together “shoulder to shoulder” in support of the police.

“Walsall has really shown its mettle in coming together and responding with calm determination.”

The incident comes after a number of recent events at mosques following the murder of Drummer Lee Rigby in Woolwich, London. Last week two men were charged in relation to an alleged arson at a mosque in Gloucester, and an Islamic cultural centre in Grimsby was hit by petrol bombs last month.

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Update

Arrest in explosive device find near Walsall mosque


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