Bournemouth man ‘fantasized about Theresa May murder’
An ASPIRING terrorist who fantasized about killing former Prime Minister Theresa May and blowing himself up in a mosque used readily available videos on YouTube to research how to make a homemade bomb, a court said.
Robert Gregory wrote in his diary that he wanted to kill MPs, murder a journalist on live television and researched the Internet “How to justify the murder of a Muslim”.
As part of his plans, the 24-year-old admitted to watching two videos online on how to build explosives – one titled ‘How to Make a Mini Bomb’ and the other titled ‘How to do a simple DIY time bomb. ”
A court heard that when Gregory was asked why he wanted to carry out these violent attacks, he said “I want to defend my people”.
He was arrested when police discovered his phone was searched online and seized his diary.
After pleading guilty to terrorist offenses, he was sentenced to four and a half years in prison after a judge condemned his “clear terrorist motives”.
Winchester Crown Court has learned that Gregory, of Bournemouth, committed the offenses just eight days after being released on license from prison, where he was serving time for stabbing a homeless man when he was just 16.
In newspaper entries read to the court, Gregory wrote that he wanted to “stab (then Prime Minister Theresa May) and kill so many MPs on Downing Street”; that he would like to “kill a journalist live on television”; and wrote that he would “blow me up in a mosque”.
Prosecutor Julia Faure Walker also revealed details of two internet searches Gregory performed on his phone on “How to Justify the Murder of a Muslim” and “Where Can I Buy a Gun in Bournemouth?”
Another diary entry from Gregory said that “not enough” people were killed in the 2019 Christchurch Mosque shooting, in which 51 people were gunned down by a white supremacist in two mosques in the city of New Zealand.
The newspaper entry read: “’We have news of the terrorist attack in New Zealand, we are finally taking a stand.
“Why do Muslims continue to condemn attacks against their own people and not against us?”
Other diary entries involved Gregory asking if an attack is still a terrorist attack if the attacker is not a Muslim and Gregory’s plans to recruit “troops” that he would radicalize over a period of time.
Another entry detailed plans to contact ISIS to learn how to make an anti-suicide vest.
It read: “Try to get your hands on the terrorist group ISIS once out of jail although I am not a Muslim so that I can learn to put on a suicide vest.”
Gregory went on to suggest that he could use the suicide vest at a Pride event.
Ms Faure Walker told the court that one of the videos he watched in April 2019 showed how to make a bomb using cards and fireworks and the other showed how to make a time bomb using using household items including an analog clock and mousetrap.
When asked by police about the diary entries, Gregory denied writing them and said he got along with Muslims, the court heard.
Mitigating, Paul Wakerley told the court that the videos Gregory watched were readily available on YouTube – one on the time bomb having 845,237 views and the other 388,000 views.
“No specialist skills were required to find these videos, they were found on YouTube,” he said.
Mr Wakerley said Gregory’s views were not supported by extremism but rather by more general feelings of violence.
He said: “Many of the diary entries referred to are extremely difficult to listen to, but they are diary entries of a man in prison over a two-year period and they are not part of the offense for which he is convicted for his plea. ”
A bespectacled Gregory – with short curly brown hair and a goatee – has pleaded guilty to two charges of terrorist information gathering.
Sentencing him to four and a half years in prison, Judge Jane Miller QC told him: “You had obvious terrorist motives. I believe you present a very high risk of harm to the public.”
Gregory has also been the subject of a Terrorism Notification Order, meaning he will be closely watched for 30 years.
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