Life sentence for Islamic State fan in fairy lights bomb bid

Updated: 

An Islamic State fan who tried to make a bomb from fairy lights after becoming "bedroom radicalised" has been jailed for life.

Zahid Hussain considered targeting railway lines after viewing hundreds of IS images of the war in Syria.

His trial was told he wrongly believed his non-viable pressure cooker "bomb" - packed with 1.6kgs of shrapnel - was capable of causing devastation.

Zahid Hussain
Zahid Hussain was sentenced to life imprisonment for trying to make an improvised bomb using fairy lights (West Midlands Police/PA)

Sentencing the "dangerous" 29-year-old to a minimum term of 15 years at Winchester Crown Court on Monday, Mr Justice Sweeney told Hussain it was clear he had been "strongly committed" to carrying out multiple bombings.

Hussain used a bedroom in his parents' house as his "base of operations and improvised laboratory" where he researched and attempted to assemble explosives.

After his arrest in August 2015, searches uncovered evidence he had carried out reconnaissance of woods near the house in Naseby Road, Alum Rock, Birmingham, including the main London rail line.

Books on guerrilla warfare were also discovered, including one which talked of mounting attacks on railways.

The judge said that had his device been viable, it would have been capable of causing a "significant explosion".

He added: "If detonated in a crowded area it would have been potentially fatal to those within metres of it and would have potentially caused serious injury among those up to 10 metres away."