TWO MEN – namely Ahmiri Ahmedi Azizi of Mount Street in Sheffield and Mohammed Hussini of Cattistock Road in London – have been found guilty of 13 terrorism offences in a trial conducted at Manchester Crown Court.
Azizi was convicted of seven offences contrary to Section 2 of the Terrorism Act 2006 (Disseminating Terrorist Publications), one offence contrary to Section 58 of the Terrorism Act 2000 (Dissemination of a Terrorist Publication) and one offence contrary to Section 53 of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (Failing to Comply with a Notice in a National Security Case).
Hussini was convicted of four offences contrary to Section 2 of the Terrorism Act 2006 (Disseminating Terrorist Publications).
Both men have been remanded in custody. Sentencing will take place at Manchester Crown Court on Friday 9 September.
Azizi was arrested in November last year after an intelligence-led investigation by Counter-Terrorism Policing North East discovered his online exchange of violent extremist material in support of Daesh. During and after his arrest, Azizi continued to express his extreme mindset towards officers and failed to comply with a National Security Notice by refusing to provide information that would easily enable access to his mobile phone.
Regardless of his refusal, digital experts from Counter-Terrorism Policing North East still managed to access the content of his mobile phone, which contained evidence of sharing violent Islamist extremist material with the intention of encouraging terrorism.
In addition, the dangerous mindset of Azizi was discovered as he possessed a video showing how to make a silencer for an automatic rifle.
Detailed examination of his mobile phone data also led to the arrest of Hussini in February this year after their digital connection became apparent. Using online applications, the pair had shared Islamist extremist propaganda with one another dating as far back as April 2021.
They shared the same harmful extremist mindset and willingness to evade detection by the police, with Hussini unsuccessfully trying to conceal his digital connection with Azizi after his arrest.
Detective Chief Superintendent Peter Craig (head of Counter-Terrorism Policing North East) stated: “This outcome highlights the seriousness of the offences committed by these individuals. The encouragement of terrorism will not be tolerated in our objective to keep our diverse communities safe from terrorism and extremism.”
Craig continued: “This case clearly shows the exemplary expertise of our digital investigators who overcame challenges to access a device which identified not only another like-minded individual, but also evidence that contradicted the defences of Azizi and Hussini and, ultimately, led to their convictions.”
Further, Craig observed: “Terrorist groups such as Daesh rely heavily on their propaganda being shared online where it’s used to radicalise, encourage support and provoke individuals to carry out attacks abroad and here in the UK. Tackling extremist material is an essential part of protecting the public and preventing offences that incite or otherwise encourage acts of terrorism.”