Finsbury Park accused ‘wanted to kill all Muslims’
Darren Osborne is alleged to have deliberately mowed down a group of worshippers in north London.
An unemployed man accused of carrying out a terror attack in Finsbury Park claimed he was a soldier and told pub-goers “I’m going to kill all Muslims” just days before the attack, a court has heard.
Darren Osborne, of Glyn Rhosyn in Cardiff, deliberately mowed down worshippers in north London using a van shortly after 12.15am on June 19 last year, prosecutors have alleged.
He had received an email warning of the rise of Islam from an account linked to English Defence League founder Tommy Robinson days earlier, the jury at Woolwich Crown Court has been told.
The court heard Osborne, 48, spoke loudly about terrorism and Muslims at the Hollybush Pub in Pentwyn, near Cardiff, on the evening of June 17, the day before he allegedly travelled to London.
Soldier Callum Spence said Osborne made comments including “Muslims are all terrorists”, “I’m going to kill all Muslims” and that he would “take it into his own hands”.
Mr Spence, a Royal Engineer, told the court: “He was pretty mumbling, but I heard him saying ‘all our families are going to be Muslim. They are all going to be terrorists.’ Things like that.”
The defendant also claimed to be a soldier but did not know the phonetic alphabet used by the military, and was “flinging his arms around”, Mr Spence added.
In a statement read to the jury, Angelo Lamberti, assistant manager of the pub, said Osborne was asked by Mr Spence what regiment he belonged to.
He said: “I heard the odd male tell the soldier that he was also a soldier. The soldier asked him what regiment he was in, to which he replied, ‘you will find out tomorrow’.”
Osborne, who was asked to leave the Hollybush, is also said to have written a letter to Parliament while at the pub and to have told a member of staff, “there is a lot of raping and pillaging out there”.
The court earlier heard that searches for Britain First leader Paul Golding, his deputy Jayda Fransen, and EDL’s Mr Robinson were carried out just hours after the London Bridge terror attack on devices later seized from Osborne’s family home.
Eight people died in the June knife and van atrocity, which came a few weeks after 22 died when Salman Abedi bombed the Manchester Arena in May.
Analysis of the iPad and two iPhones also revealed searches about bringing back capital punishment and about Islamic State supporters said to be celebrating the Manchester attack.
Internet history showed that Infowars, described as a “conspiracy theorist and fake news website”, was also accessed.
An email message from Mr Robinson’s account was also captured in a screenshot on one device on June 9.
It read: “What Salman Abedi did is not the beginning and it won’t be the end.
“There is a nation within a nation forming just beneath the surface of the UK.
“It is a nation built on hatred, on violence and on Islam.”
Prosecutor Jonathan Rees QC said it was not suggested the message was sent directly from Mr Robinson.
Just over a week later, Osborne is accused of travelling to London and deliberately ploughing into Makram Ali, 51, and nine other people on a crowded pavement in the Finsbury Park area.
Mr Rees told the jury on Monday that the “act of extreme violence” was considered by the prosecution to be a terrorist attack.
His estranged partner Sarah Andrews described him as a “total loner” who became “brainwashed” in a matter of weeks after watching a television drama about the Rochdale grooming sex scandal.
He had become “obsessed” with Muslims in the weeks before the attack after watching BBC programme Three Girls, based on testimony from victims of the Rochdale grooming gangs, she said.
Osborne denies the the murder of Mr Ali and attempted murder of “persons at the junction of Seven Sisters Road and Whadcoat Street, London”.