An NHS doctor who launched terrorist attacks at Glasgow Airport and a London nightclub last year has been found guilty by a jury at Woolwich Crown Court.

Bilal Abdulla, a 29-year old British-born Iraqi, was found guilty of conspiring to cause murder and conspiring to cause explosions in a case that shook Scotland out of its complacency over Islamist terrorism.

Jordanian Dr Mohammed Asha was found not guilty of conspiring to cause murder and conspiring to cause explosions.

Abdulla and Kafeel Ahmed, who died following the attack, were behind the unsuccessful attempt to set off two car bombs in central London and a suicide attack on Glasgow Airport in June 2007.

No one was killed in either attack as the combination of gas cylinders, nails and petrol inside the vehicles failed to ignite, a stroke of good luck that police attributed to the inexperience of the doctors turned murderers.

Abdulla was arrested at the scene at Glasgow Airport after a Green Cherokee jeep was driven into the doors of the main departure hall on what was the airport's busiest day of the year.

Ahmed, the driver of the jeep, was severely burnt in the attack and died of his injuries four weeks later.

Dr Asha, 28, who was described as the shadowy financial backer and the spiritual supporter for the mission, was arrested on the M6 motorway near his Staffordshire home in the aftermath of the attacks.

The respected neurosurgeon, a married father of one, was the first person that Abdulla contacted after the failed London bombing attempt and was in touch with the bombers at every stage of planning.

The three men had met as students in Cambridge in 2000. However, the jury decided that Dr Asha should be cleared of both charges he faced.

Over eight weeks the seven-woman five-man jury at Woolwich Crown court heard evidence how Abdulla, who worked at Paisley's Royal Alexandra hospital, and Ahmed turned a rented house eigh miles away at 6 Neuk Cresent in Houston into a bomb factory.

The prosecution detailed the movements of the men and the discovery of two Mercedes car bombs loaded with gas cylinders, petrol and nails in the early hours of June 29 last year.

One car was left in Haymarket outside the Tiger, Tiger nightclub and the second was left at a bus stop in adjoining Cockspur Street.

The bombs failed because of loose connections in the phone detonators and the smothering effect of petrol and gas fumes, jurors heard.

The next day, with police closing in on the suspects, a Jeep carrying a similar cargo was crashed into Glasgow Airport in an attempted suicide attack.

Hundreds of travellers fled in terror after the vehicle caught fire and dense, black smoke filled the terminal.

Abdulla was arrested after throwing petrol bombs and fighting with police while his companion Ahmed, who later died, doused himself in petrol and set himself alight.

Both men in the dock denied the charges against them. Dr Asha claimed he knew nothing of the conspiracy and Dr Abdulla admitted he was motivated by revenge for the Western invasion of his Iraqi homeland but he claimed he wanted to cause damage to property not people.

Abdulla, wearing a sweatshirt and open-necked shirt, sat slouched on the dock bench with his arm along the back of the seat.

He showed no reaction as both guilty verdicts were read by the jury foreman, Asha, dressed in a smart suit and tie and sat beside him, smiled in silence as the jury acquitted him.

Mr Justice Mackay indicated he will sentence Abdulla, who faces a life sentence, tomorrow morning.

Speaking to Asha, he said: "Dr Asha, you have been found not guilty by the jury on both counts and that means what it says.

"You are not guilty of these charges and may be discharged and resume, I hope, your life as it was before."

Asha is expected to be released from Belmarsh prison later today and deported to his home country Jordan.

The jury deliberated for 24 hours and 15 minutes.

Attorney General Baroness Scotland QC said: "Crimes of terror are complex, heinous and incredibly damaging to the very fabric of our society.

"I would like to pay credit to the authorities in both England and Scotland, and commend how hard they have worked to pull this case together, and their efforts to help root out and combat terrorism."

Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said: "The attack on Glasgow Airport was a despicable and cowardly act, designed to inflict death and injury on innocent men, women and children, during one of the busiest travel weekends of the year.

"That the perpetrators failed is a tribute to the many BAA staff, airport workers, emergency service personnel and passengers who responded so quickly, and so bravely, in the face of such an extraordinary act of aggression.

"As a result of their efforts, we were able to re-open Glasgow Airport less than 24 hours after the terrorist attack.

"We have worked hard to repair and rebuild the airport following the attack.

"Naturally, we now wish to put the events behind us and focus on the future as we continue our transformation of Glasgow Airport."

Since the attack, BAA Glasgow has invested £4 million on terminal repairs, improvements to the forecourt and heightened security, including £2 million to bolster security along the forecourt.

Three hundred steel-encased bollards will be installed along the length of the terminal building by Christmas.

Before he was led from the dock ahead of his friend, Asha shook Abdulla's hand and the men embraced.

They appeared to wish each other well as they exchanged a few words before dock officers led Asha away.

As the verdicts were read out Asha pressed his head against the glass of the dock and closed his eyes.

It is understood Asha will be taken from Belmarsh Prison to an immigration detention centre.

A source close to him said he may challenge the deportation procedure and apply for bail.

Mr Justice Mackay said Abdulla will be sentenced in the same court tomorrow at 10am.

Jim Sturman QC, for Abdulla, said his crimes were motivated by politics, not religion.

The barrister said his client needed time "to allow the consequences of conviction to sink in".

He said: "Dr Abdulla wishes me to emphasise that these offences were motivated by politics, not religion.

"This is not a case where his intention was driven by religious faith but by his frustration with what he saw as an unjust war."

Mr Sturman said it was inevitable that the judge would examine the "terrible dichotomy" of a man trained to heal but convicted of plotting murder.

He added: "Clearly at the centre of Dr Abdulla is, and was, a decent man, a good son, a good brother who has been brought to these events, he says, by the various wars under which he has laboured."

The judge thanked the jurors and excused them from jury service for five years.

He said: "Members of the jury, I am deeply thankful to you for the care you have taken with this case.

"There are those who say big and difficult cases ought to be tried by judges and not by juries. I am not one of them.

"I deeply appreciate the fact that you performed the core task of the decision here. It is right that you should do so.

"The 12 of you have more wisdom collectively than any single judge.

"I am not going to sentence this man today.

"I want to think about it but I am not going to take long to do that and I am going to sentence in the morning."

Scott Pattison, director of operations for the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service in Scotland, said: "Bilal Abdulla has today been convicted of the most appalling acts of terrorism, with the clear and immediate potential to cause large-scale loss of life in both London and Glasgow.

"Authorities across the UK will continue to work together, sharing information and working across jurisdictions, to ensure that all of our communities are protected from people who plan and seek to carry out mass atrocities with no regard for the sanctity of human life.

"Strathclyde Police and the Metropolitan Police worked together on this investigation from Day 1, gathering and safeguarding all of the available evidence.

"Officers from both forces have shown tremendous professionalism throughout and special tribute is due to those officers, in Glasgow and London, who attended at the scenes of crime on the day and took immediate action to safeguard lives."

He also praised the CPS which "prepared a professional and compelling prosecution" case to bring before the jury.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner John McDowall, head of the Met's Counter Terrorism Command, said: "Bilal Abdulla planned to murder many innocent people when he set out to attack central London.

"He and Kafeel Ahmed, who died in the attack on Glasgow Airport, wanted to capture public attention, both in the UK and abroad.

"They would certainly have done this had their murderous plans come to fruition.

"We believe that the bombs in London were to have been the first in a series of similar attacks. Abdulla and Kafeel Ahmed had at least two other vehicles and further supplies of gas, petrol and other items for constructing bombs.

"They planted bombs outside the Tiger Tiger nightclub in The Haymarket, where hundreds of revellers were enjoying an evening out, and also in nearby Cockspur Street, right next to a night bus stop.

"It was more luck than judgment that their repeated attempts to detonate the two car bombs by mobile phone failed.

"Just a day later, knowing they had only a limited time before they were caught, they drove at speed at the doors of Glasgow Airport with the intention that their Jeep would explode inside the departure hall with massive loss of life.

"The airport was full of passengers checking in for their flights on its busiest day of the year.

"I would like to highlight the bravery of explosives officers from the Counter Terrorism Command, who have already been publicly commended for their actions.

"Their expertise in dismantling the London bombs not only prevented the loss of life and serious injury, but also provided us with a treasure trove of evidence.

"We worked very closely with our colleagues from Strathclyde Police and other regional forces, and it is this joint working and professionalism which has lead to today's conviction."

Scottish-Islamic Foundation chairman Osama Saeed said: "The verdict is very welcome and I hope that Abdulla goes down for a very long time indeed.

"I was at the very door that the Jeep Cherokee hit only an hour beforehand with my children. Terrorism has no boundaries on who can possibly be killed.

"We will continue to do whatever we can to combat the threat we all face.

"This includes being vigilant and making clear Islam's opposition to such acts.

"We are also developing young Muslims so they know how to express their views in society properly if they are angry about matters abroad - through the democratic process."

Bashir Ahmad, Scotland's first Muslim MSP, welcomed the verdict.

Mr Ahmad said: "As a doctor, Bilal Abdulla should have valued the sanctity of human life.

"Instead, when crashing his Jeep packed full of explosives into Glasgow Airport he showed no regard for who was killed or maimed.

"It is only by chance that we were fortunate not to suffer any fatalities during this disgraceful attack.

"Mr Abdulla often cited his anger at foreign policy as reasoning for his attack. This can be no justification as we have democratic channels to deal with grievances in the proper way.

"Besides a couple of minor incidents, which were well handled by the authorities, there was no cataclysmic backlash against the Muslim community after the Glasgow Airport attacks.

"I believe the Scottish people will show the same resilience and unity in the wake of this verdict and understand that Scottish-Muslims wholeheartedly condemn terrorism regardless of who commits it."

Speaking outside Glasgow Airport today, Strathclyde Police assistant chief constable Campbell Corrigan welcomed the conviction of Abdulla.

Mr Corrigan, the senior investigating officer on the day of the airport attack, said: "Strathclyde Police are very satisfied with the result. It's the proper result and I think it is the proper result for the people of Scotland as well."

The officer was at the airport within 20 minutes of the flaming Jeep crashing into the terminal and on his arrival was confronted by a scene of "chaos".

"By the time I arrived, the vehicle was still in flames with smoke pouring out of it," he said.

"There was pretty much chaos. I realised very quickly we were dealing with a large incident, and quickly thereafter a terrorist incident.

"I felt the same emotions as anybody else - I was gobsmacked that something like this had actually happened at Glasgow Airport.

"Very quickly though you go into professional mode and you start dealing with the consequences and making sure people are safe.

"There were 4,000 people roughly in the airport building, it was one of the busiest days, the first day of the school holidays."

He thanked everyone who helped tackle the terrorists, both police and the public, saying they were "quite simply outstanding people".

The officer also praised holidaymakers evacuated from the airport for remaining calm.

"Four thousand people were evacuated to the SECC (Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre).

"Nobody complained, they all were able to play their part, they all were able to give their information, and some of that information, make no bones about it, contributed to Mr Abdulla being convicted."

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