IS teen from Bradford who hated homosexuals faces jail on terror charges

Chaudhury downloaded extremist material including the image of Jihadi John before he beheaded a Western hostage.
Chaudhury downloaded extremist material including the image of Jihadi John before he beheaded a Western hostage.
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A RADICALISED Bradford teenager is facing jail for plotting to go to Syria to fight for Islamic State.

On the first day of his trial at the Old Bailey, British-born Syed Choudhury, 19, pleaded guilty to preparing acts of terrorism before his arrest in December last year.

The court heard he fell under the influence of older men he regarded as more learned after he left home in Bradford to go to college in Cardiff.

Choudhury’s extreme religious views first surfaced in 2012 when he began a course in business administration, IT, key skills and car mechanics at Cardiff and Vale College.

He was heard to say gay people should be killed and they would go to hell.

As part of an IT project, he made a poster reading Islam Will Dominate The World Freedom Can Go To Hell.

In May 2013, Choudhury left college with qualifications at a level below GCSE and went to Bangladesh for a few months before returning to Cardiff where he stayed with an aunt and uncle.

He had saved around £3,000 from working in a fast food restaurant and other unskilled jobs so he did have the means to carry out his wish of going to Syria, prosecutor Sarah Whitehouse QC said.

In 2014, he came to the attention of anti-radicalisation group Prevent after he attended a demonstration about the Gaza conflict brandishing a banner stating Islamic State will bring peace to the Middle East.

But he became angry and aggressive and rebuffed their approaches, the court heard.

He went on to search the Internet for topics including 10 reasons to join Isis, Turkey Travel, Jihadist Highway and How To travel To Syria These Days.

And he networked on Twitter for advice on how to join Isis in Syria.

He continued to download extremist material including the image of Jihadi John before he beheaded a Western hostage.

He also had a video of a mass shooting and images of western leaders behind walls of flame.

Choudhury had moved to a bedsit in Allerton Street in Cardiff by the time he was arrested on December 4.

Mrs Whitehouse outlined a number of extremist comments he made to police.

He told officers the only reason he had not gone to Syria yet was because he wanted to find someone he trusted to go with.

Choudhury also spoke of his support for Isis, that he did not care about the UK and its laws and he wanted to be the one to bring Sharia law to the UK.

In mitigation, his lawyer Abdul Iqbal QC said the case showed a “lack of sophistication, some naivety and level of immaturity”.

“He was openly using Facebook and Twitter accounts that could link to him to post material that was highly incriminating.

“There appears to be no attempt at all to disguise his involvement or insulate himself from detection.”

The barrister said Choudhury now felt embarrassed by some of the things he said in police interview.

And he had been susceptible to “older men who he regarded as more learned that him” who plied him with extremist ideas.

The court heard Choudhury had a unhappy start in life. His mother was a British citizen and his father was Bangladeshi and had never lived in the UK.

When his mother abandoned him days after his birth, he was brought up by relatives in Bradford.

Choudhury appeared in court wearing a black prayer cap and all black clothes to enter his guilty plea.

A second charge of inviting support for a proscribed organisation was ordered to lie on file.

Adjourning sentence until July 7 for reports, judge Peter Rook QC told him: “You have pleaded guilty to conducting preparation for acts of terrorism and it is quite clear that you wanted to travel to Syria to join Isis and the only reason you had not gone was you had not found anyone you trusted to travel with.

“You must understand there is only one sentence I can impose. It must be a custodial sentence.”