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IS supporter incited lone wolf attacks on Prince George at school, court told

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Husnain Rashid, of Nelson, Lancashire, is on trial for terrorism offences.

Court artist sketch of Husnain Rashid (Elizabeth Cook/PA)

An Islamic State (IS) supporter encouraged would-be lone wolf attackers to target Prince George at school, a court has heard.

Husnain Rashid, of Nelson, Lancashire, provided an “e-toolkit for terrorism” in a “prolific” online channel he ran named the Lone Mujahid, Woolwich Crown Court was told on Wednesday.

The 32-year-old, who has been employed as a teacher at the Muhammadi mosque, also called for ice creams to be poisoned and for the four-year-old prince to be targeted at Thomas’s Battersea in south-west London, jurors heard.

Husnain Rashid court case
Prince George’s school, Thomas’s Battersea, in south-west London (Jonathan Brady/PA)

“His suggestions included injecting poison into supermarket ice creams and targeting Prince George at his first school.”

Rashid is charged with encouraging terrorism by posting a photograph of the prince, along with the address of the four-year-old’s school, a silhouette of a jihad fighter and the message: “Even the royal family will not be left alone”.

Husnain Rashid court case
Prince George arrives for his first day at school, holding hands with his father, the Duke of Cambridge (Richard Pohle/The Times/PA)

Rashid specialised in supporting lone attackers providing assistance with “every conceivable type of attack”, including the use of bombs, chemicals and knives, she added.

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He also communicated with a British terrorist in Syria named Omar Ali Hussain, advising him on how to make successful attacks including bringing down aircraft with lasers, Ms Darlow told the court.

She said Rashid published his own magazine targeting lone wolves, distributed al Qaida terror magazine Inspire and wanted to travel to Syria to fight in IS territories.

“He made numerous posts glorifying terrorist atrocities committed successfully against others and encouraging and inciting his readers to plan and commit more successful terror attacks of their own,” Ms Darlow said.

When police swooped on his house, she said, Rashid “hurled” a phone containing a “treasure trove” of evidence over a wall and into an alleyway.

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The phone revealed that he had been using Telegram, the secretive social media application, to take part in thousands of chats, the prosecutor said.

Rashid is also accused of posting a photograph of the Burmese ambassador to the UK and saying ” You know what to do”, urging others to “fight and spill the blood to the apes in your land” and calling for others to “start preparing tools and weapons/explosives”.

Rashid, of Leonard Street, Nelson, has denied three counts of engaging in conduct in preparation of terrorist acts, one count of encouraging terrorism, two of dissemination of a terrorist publication and one of failing to comply with a notice under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act.

The allegations span a period between October 2016 and April this year.

The trial, expected to last six weeks, continues.

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