A British muslim convert who plotted with a Filipino terrorist to launch a bloody attack on London’s streets has been jailed.
Islamic State supporter Lewis Ludlow was preparing to drive a bomb-laden truck through Oxford Street after being refused permission to leave the UK.
The 27-year-old had previously planned to move to the Philippines and wage jihad there.
He was sentenced to life imprisonment at the Old Bailey yesterday (Wednesday, March 6) and will serve a minimum term of 15 years.
Judge Nicholas Hilliard QC said he was satisfied that Ludlow was “engaged in preparations to launch a spectacular multi victim attack”.
“Multiple deaths were risked and very likely to be caused,” he said.
Ludlow, who called himself “The Eagle”, carried out reconnaissance of London targets and filmed a pledge of allegiance to IS.
Detectives recovered torn-up notes from bins outside his home which listed potential targets, including the Disney Store on Oxford Street, and said as many as 100 people could be killed in the attack.
Sentencing him, Judge Hilliard said Ludlow had “shown an interest in extremism for a number of years” which involved a “deep and genuine attachment to its objectives”.
He described him as “nobody’s fool” and said he was not being forced to do anything by a Filipino IS militant, with whom Ludlow was plotting.
“I do not regard you as suggestible or easily taken advantage of, ” he said. “You were an enthusiastic participant in a joint plan.”
Muslim convert claimed to be sex tourist
The former mail worker, who also called himself “The Ghost”, had been communicating with a radicalised Filipino medic called Eyadzhemar Abdusalam, also known as Abu Yaqeen.
In February 2018 he was stopped at London’s Heathrow Airport with plane tickets to Zamboanga. When asked the reason for his travel, he claimed to be a sex tourist.
His passport was then revoked, leaving him feeling like “a trapped animal unable to escape from its cage”.
A few days later, a search of his home in Kent turned up the evidence of his plans to target London.
In a video shown in court, Ludlow said: “I have nothing for this country of Britain. I spit on your citizenship, your passport, you can go to hell with that.”
Ludlow said the cancellation of his passport “literally broke my heart” and he had then been encouraged by his Filipino contact to carry out a terror attack in the UK instead.
As we previously reported, the muslim convert pleaded guilty in August to preparing acts of terrorism, but claimed he had already abandoned the idea.
He also admitted funding IS abroad and was sentenced to a further seven years in prison, to run concurrently.
Ludlow is not the first British muslim convert to plan joining the IS in the Philippines. In 2017, we reported on the case of Ryan Counsell, who was found guilty of planning to join Abu Sayyaf. The Nottingham supermarket worker had already booked flight tickets to Zamboanga and amassed a hoard of military kit when arrested.
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