Conviction of Mohammed Farooq for the Terrorist attempt on Leeds Hospital

Following a four week trial at Sheffield Crown Court Jonathan Sandiford KC leading Angus MacDonald successfully prosecuted a student nurse who brought a pressure cooker bomb to a hospital and planned a terrorist attack on an RAF base. Mr Farooq has today been found guilty.

Mohammad Farooq, 28, was arrested outside the maternity ward of St James’s Hospital in Leeds on January 20, 2023, after showing a gun to a member of the public and stating he “felt like killing everyone.”

When police arrived, Farooq, a former student nurse at the hospital, informed officers he had a bomb. A search of his bag revealed a pressure cooker with attached wires. Bomb disposal experts confirmed the home-made explosive device was viable. Additionally, a nearby Gediz 9mm P.A.K. semi-automatic pistol, found to be an imitation, was discovered.

Farooq’s car was located at the hospital, containing items such as nails, a knife, five plastic tubs with low explosive mixture, and a floorplan of four hospital wards.

Following his arrest, evidence from key electronic devices indicated Farooq’s interest in radical Islamic ideology and Jihad. This included activities related to the manufacture of the explosive device and attack planning. Farooq had also made online searches of RAF Menwith Hill, an RAF base in North Yorkshire. Location data from his phone showed he had been near the base on two occasions.

Prosecutor, Jonathan Sandiford KC said:

he had a grievance against several of his former colleagues and had been conducting a poison pen campaign against them.

Today, a jury at Sheffield Crown Court found Farooq guilty of preparing acts of terrorism.

He had previously pleaded guilty to possession of an explosive substance with intent to endanger life, possession of an explosive substance in suspicious circumstances, possession of information likely to be useful to a terrorist, possession of an imitation firearm with intent to commit an indictable offense, and possession of an imitation firearm with intent to cause fear of violence.

The prosecution followed an investigation by Counter Terrorism Policing North East. Farooq will be sentenced at Sheffield Crown Court on a date to be determined.

BBC News link

Bethan David, head of the CPS Counter Terrorism Division, stated:

“Farooq is an extremely dangerous individual who amassed significant practical and theoretical information, enabling him to produce a viable explosive device. He took that homemade explosive device to a hospital where he worked, intending to cause serious harm. Examination of his electronic devices revealed hatred towards his colleagues and those he considered non-believers. It is clear from his internet searches that he was conducting extensive research on RAF Menwith Hill for a potential attack. Farooq’s extremist views pose a threat to our society, and I am pleased the jury found him guilty of his crimes.”

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Jonathon Sandiford KC St Pauls Chambers

Jonathan Sandiford KC

Call: 1992 Silk: 2020

Angus MacDonald

Angus MacDonald

Call: 2009

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