Widow of 7/7 bomber linked to Africa plot

A police officer at Jermaine Lindsay's house in Aylesbury after the 7/7 bombings. Below: The four London bombers arriving at Luton train station. Jermaine Lindsay in the dark cap is second from left.
A police officer at Jermaine Lindsay's house in Aylesbury after the 7/7 bombings. Below: The four London bombers arriving at Luton train station. Jermaine Lindsay in the dark cap is second from left.
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She has already denied having any knowledge of her husband’s planning of the 7/7 bombings, the deadly attacks plotted in Yorkshire that killed 52 innocent victims in London.

But counter-terrorism officers believe Samantha Lewthwaite, who has lived in Bradford and Huddersfield, may be able to help their enquiries into another suspected conspiracy, which is thought to have targeted a coastal city in Africa.

The four London bombers arriving at Luton train station. Jermaine Lindsay in the dark cap is second from left.

The four London bombers arriving at Luton train station. Jermaine Lindsay in the dark cap is second from left.

Ms Lewthwaite, 28, was married to Jermaine Lindsay, from Huddersfield, who blew himself up on a Tube train between King’s Cross and Russell Square on July 7, 2005.

She described the attacks on London – carried out by Lindsay and three accomplices from Leeds – as “abhorrent” and suggested that militants had “poisoned” her husband’s mind.

The revelation now, however, that Kenyan authorities are trying to trace a terror suspect who has used Ms Lewthwaite’s name is likely to bring her relationship with Lindsay under more scrutiny.

Police investigating an alleged plot to bomb Kenya’s second city, Mombasa, last Christmas say they are unable to rule out the possibility that their suspect and Ms Lewthwaite are the same woman.

The suspect entered Kenya on a forged passport but escaped after apparently being tipped off that counter-terrorism authorities were about to pounce.

She is understood to be travelling with three children. Ms Lewthwaite is reported to be a mother of three.

A police spokesman in Nairobi said: “We do not know it is her (Ms Lewthwaite)... we know she has (several) identities.”

Ms Lewthwaite’s family from Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, is reported to have lost contact with her in recent years.

The youngest of three children to a former British Army soldier, she converted to Islam in her teens after reportedly becoming close to Muslim neighbours whom she believed had a stronger family network.

She came into contact with Jamaican-born Lindsay, himself a teenage Muslim convert, through an internet chat room while she was a studying for a degree in religion and politics at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London.

They met face-to-face for the first time at a Stop the War march in London and married in October 2002, using their adopted names, Asmantara and Jamal, when Ms Lewthwaite was 18 and Lindsay 17.

The couple lived in Huddersfield at first, and then in Bradford for a short time, before moving to Aylesbury to be closer to Ms Lewthwaite’s family.

They had a son and Ms Lewthwaite was eight months’ pregnant with a second child when Lindsay, 19, brought terror to London’s public transport network with co-conspirators Mohammed Sidique Khan, 30, Shehzad Tanweer, 22, and Hasib Hussain, 18, all from Leeds.

Ms Lewthwaite told a newspaper shortly after the bombings she had ordered Lindsay out of the house on the night before the attacks because he had been behaving so oddly she thought he might be having an affair.

She said his behaviour had changed after he visited mosques in London and Luton. “He had taken to disappearing for days and I told him to go to a mosque and talk to his brothers and come back to me again when he was the Jamal I married,” she added.

She said she had heard him going into their son’s room before he left: “He must have been there in the dead of night to kiss his little boy goodbye... then crept off to blow up King’s Cross.”

Ms Lewthwaite said she “condemned with all my heart” what her husband had done, but the 7/7 inquests were told that she and Lindsay had visited attack ringleader Sidique Khan.