Men accused of planning machine gun attack on Jewish community appear in court

By John Mercury May 15, 2024

Two men from Greater Manchester have appeared in court accused of preparing to carry out a machine gun attack on Jewish targets and members of law enforcement and the military.

Walid Saadaoui, 36, from Abram, near Wigan, and Amar Hussein, 50, of no fixed abode, are charged with preparation of terrorist acts.

They were arrested by Greater Manchester Police (GMP) on the evening of 8 May in separate locations.

The two men appeared at Westminster Magistrates Court alongside Saadaoui’s younger brother, Bilel, 35, from Hindley, near Wigan.

Bilel Saadaoui is charged with failure to disclose information about an act of terrorism.

Prosecutor Rebecca Waller told the court: “They intended causing multiple fatalities using automatic weapons.”

All three appeared in custody wearing grey, prison-issue tracksuits and surrounded by police officers.

Walid Saadaoui spoke only to confirm his name, date of birth and address. He was remanded in custody and there was no application for bail.

Hussein was unrepresented and was asked if he wanted to apply for bail. He refused to look at the judge and answered: “Do whatever you want to.”

Bilel Saadaoui, who has lived with his wife and her two sons since 2010, made an application for bail which was denied. He sobbed as he was led from the dock.

District Judge Louisa Cieciora remanded all three men into custody and they will appear at the Old Bailey on Friday 24 May.

The men were arrested after four search warrants were executed in the Bolton, Abram, Hindley and Great Lever areas of Greater Manchester at around 7.30pm on Wednesday 8 May.

Assistant Chief Constable Rob Potts said the planned warrants were part of an ongoing counter-terrorism investigation which was the “culmination of much detailed planning”.

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