Acouple plotted an Islamic State-inspired attack on Britain with a home-made bomb or deadly ricin poison after meeting on a dating website, a court has heard.
Would-be “lone wolf” Munir Mohammed volunteered for a “new job in the UK”, in Facebook communications with a man he believed was an IS commander, jurors were told.
He had allegedly enlisted the help of pharmacist Rowaida El-Hassan, drawing on her knowledge of what chemicals were needed to make a bomb.
At the time of his arrest last December, Mohammed had two of the three components for TATP explosives and instruction manuals on how to make explosives, mobile phone detonators, and ricin, the Old Bailey heard.
Prosecutor Anne Whyte QC said: “This is a case which reflects the age in which we live. It demonstrates the relative ease with which acts of terrorism can be prepared, thanks to the internet.
“The prosecution allege that Munir Mohammed had resolved upon a lone wolf attack and that Rowaida El-Hassan was aware of his engagement with such a plan.”
The pair, of Sudanese origin, had met through a dating website called singlemuslim.com.
On the site, Mohammed described himself as a British citizen from Sudan who was looking for a wife and partner to have children with.
El-Hassan, who graduated from University College London, referred to having a Masters degree in pharmacy in her profile.
She said: “I am looking for a simple, very simple, honest and straightforward man who fears Allah before anything else.
“I am looking for a man I can vibe with on a spiritual and intellectual level. Someone who can teach me new things and inspire me.”
The pair had a “rapidly formed emotional attachment and a shared ideology” and by the spring of 2016 were in regular contact on WhatsApp, jurors heard.
Ms Whyte said: “Rowaida El-Hassan had a professional knowledge of chemicals because of her professional training and qualifications.
“She assisted Mohammed by providing him with information about chemical components required for bomb-making and how to source them, and she assisted his online research about the manufacture of ricin using castor beans.”
As well as extremist views and videos, they shared arguments, jokes and every-day concerns, such as Mohammed’s “precarious” immigration status, jurors heard.
El-Hassan also gave Mohammed money and supported him with other issues, including car insurance, the court heard.
In August last year, Mohammed was allegedly put in touch via Facebook with a man he believed was an IS commander, known as Abubakr Kurdi.
He pledged allegiance to Kurdi and offered to participate in “a new job in the UK”, said to mean an act of terrorism, jurors heard.
In September last year, Mohammed allegedly complained he had not received his instructions, saying: “If possible send how we make dough for Syrian bread and other types of food.”
Ms Whyte told jurors “dough” was a code word for explosives and “Syrian bread and other types of food” was a crude reference to a device.
In November last year, Mohammed got hold of a video containing information on how to manufacture ricin, the court heard.
Mohammed, 36, of Derby, and El-Hassan, 33, of north-west London, deny preparing terrorist acts between November 2015 and December 2016.