Life imprisonment for terrorist responsible for Westminster attack

Salih Khater will serve a minimum of 15 years

Monday, October 14, 2019

A copycat terrorist who “tried to kill as many people as possible” by driving into cyclists and police officers outside the Houses of Parliament has been jailed for life.

Salih Khater, 30, ploughed his Ford Fiesta into a pedestrian and cyclists who were stopped at a red light in Parliament Square on August 14 2018.

He then sped into a security lane and crashed into barriers, narrowly missing two police officers.

The Old Bailey heard that Khater, from Birmingham, had wanted to cause maximum carnage and it was “miraculous” that no one was killed in the “premeditated and deliberate” attack.

He was found guilty of two charges of attempted murder in July, despite claiming he crashed because he “got lost” around Westminster and panicked.

Mitigation lawyer, Peter Carter QC, told the court Khater remained an “enigma” and there was no evidence that the attack was connected to a terrorist organisation.

However, Mrs Justice McGowan found the defendant had deliberately copied other terrorists, with the intention to “kill as many people as possible and by doing so spread fear and terror”.

The judge said: “It was an attack on strangers and police officers at the seat of democracy in this country.

“You are dangerous in that you present a significant risk of causing serious harm to the public in the future.

“Even acting alone, you acted for a terrorist purpose. All the evidence is consistent with that conclusion.”

She sentenced Khater to life behind bars, with a mimum term of 15 years.

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