Monday, June 19, 2006

A Pakistani man accused of planning to blow up an electricity grid in Australia has been found guilty of terrorist offences

Phil Mercer:

Faheem Khalid Lodhi, a Pakistan-born architect, was convicted of gathering maps, chemicals and instructions for making home-made bombs and poison.

Lodhi, who denied all charges, was prosecuted under Australia's new, strict anti-terrorism laws and will be sentenced at a later date.

The court heard that Lodhi planned an attack in Sydney in October 2003.

The prosecution said that the thirty-six year old architect had written a so-called terror manual in his native Urdu.

It had instructions for making explosives and poisons obtained from the internet.

The court was also shown maps of Australia's national electricity grid that Lodhi had bought.

The jury was also told that the police had seized DVDs that contained information on violent jihad and terrorist training.

Lodhi, who is an Australian citizen, had offered various explanations for the documents and disks that were found in his possession. He insisted that his interest in chemicals was part of a business venture.

He said the maps of Australia's energy infrastructure were to be included in a marketing plan to send generators to Pakistan.

The jury took almost five days to find Faheem Khalid Lodhi guilty of three of the four charges he had faced.

Investigators have claimed that Lodhi had been in close contact with a suspected extremist from France who had been deported by Australian authorities. Both men are alleged to have trained with Lashkar-i-Toiba, a militant group based in Pakistan.

A stiff warning to all fanatics

Rot in jail

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