Knifeman behind Leytonstone Tube station attack sentenced to life in prison


A schizophrenic knifeman who tried to behead a musician during an Islamic State-inspired rampage at a Tube station has been sentenced to life in prison.

Somali-born Muhiddin Mire, 30, will serve a minimum of eight and a half years before being considered for parole, and will start his sentence at Broadmoor secure hospital.

Islamic State-inspired knifeman Muhiddin Mire (Metropolitan Police/PA)
(Metropolitan Police/PA)

On December 5 last year, Mire targeted strangers at random in the ticket hall at Leytonstone Underground station in east London.

He grabbed fellow passenger Lyle Zimmerman and attempted to murder the 56-year-old after they travelled on the same train from Stratford to Leytonstone, where Mire lived alone in Sansom Road.

cctv of the attack in the tube station (CPS/PA)

Sentencing him at the Old Bailey, Judge Nicholas Hilliard QC, Recorder of London, said that while he accepted Mire was suffering from paranoid schizophrenia at the time of the offence, he was also of the opinion he had been motivated by events in Syria.

He continued: "In other words, because Muslims were being bombed in Syria, he was going to attack civilians here. That was designed to intimidate a section of the public, and it was to advance an extreme cause."

police cordoning off Leytonstone Underground Station (Jonathan Brady/PA)
(Jonathan Brady/PA)

Judge Hilliard added that Mire's "brazen" actions were carried out in order to advance a "religious and extremist cause".

"This was an attempt to to kill an innocent member of the public for ideological reasons by cutting his throat in plain sight for maximum impact," he said.

Flanked by several dock officers and wearing a blue tracksuit top, Mire stared ahead as he was sentenced.