Surrey man convicted of terrorism offences
A man from Surrey has been found guilty of terrorism offences after being arrested in January 2021.
Asad Bhatti was charged at that time and a search was carried out at an address in Redhill.
The 47-year-old has now been found guilty of two counts of possessing an article for the purpose of terrorism, and three counts of making or possessing an explosive substance under suspicious circumstances.
Bhatti came to the attention of Counter Terrorism Policing South East (CTPSE) after taking his computer in to a shop to be fixed, where a member of staff found some concerning file titles which he reported.
Police carried out a search at his home and a storage container he rented, where the officers found chemicals, chemistry equipment, electronic circuitry and even an improvised explosive device, which was dismantled by a specialist explosive ordnance disposal team. At his home, police found items including a USB stick containing guides to make explosive devices.
Detective Chief Superintendent Olly Wright, head of CTPSE, said: “The case against Bhatti was strong, I am glad the jury have found him guilty today.
“There was clear evidence of his extreme Islamist ideology and the danger he posed. He clearly hated those whom he considers do not follow his version of Islam, and he made a range of derogatory comments towards those he considers to be ‘unbelievers’.
“I am especially grateful to the member of public who recognised the risks and took steps to call the police. This allowed Counter Terrorism Policing to stop Bhatti’s progress in manufacturing explosive devices which could otherwise have caused significant harm to the public.”
Bhatti will be sentenced at the Old Bailey on Tuesday 25 April.
Image: Ben Sutherland from Crystal Palace, London, UK, CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons