Jihadi rapper showed off ‘militant camo’ gear in homemade videos, court told

Emily Pennink
·3-min read

A rapping Jihadi spent around £150 of his benefits on combat gear and blades then showed off his new look in homemade videos, a court has heard.

Sahayb Abu, 27, bought an 18-inch sword, a knife, combat vest, hat, balaclavas and gloves as he prepared a terror attack in the pandemic, it is alleged.

He sent videos of himself wearing a balaclava and hat to his brother Muhamed Abu, 32, who is accused of failing to disclose his activities.

In one video, he talked about “militant born, militant wear” and “militant camo”.

He said he was “just waiting on the body armour … the body armour (could) stop a bullet”.

Abu brothers court case
The 18-inch knife allegedly bought online by Sahayb Abu (Met Police/PA)

On Thursday, jurors were shown some of the items Sahayb Abu allegedly bought and an Islamic State flag that was seized from the address where he was arrested on July 9 last year.

A large pointed qama sword, described as coming from the Indo-Persian region, was ordered from an online shop which sells replica militaria and historical knives on July 1 last year.

Sahayb Abu paid nearly £60 for the large pointed sword, including extra to have it sharpened.

But due to the intervention of authorities – it was never dispatched.

Abu brothers court case
A camouflage hat allegedly bought online by Sahayb Abu (Met Police/PA)

On June 28 last year, Abu, going by the username Billy The Kid, offered £44.10 for a combat vest on Shpock, an online marketplace, which was also intercepted.

Other items including a tradesman knife were bought on Amazon and delivered to Sahayb Abu at a cost of £50.

Jurors heard that unemployed Sahayb Abu had no income other than Universal Credit.

He had just £1.13 in his bank account at the time of his arrest in Ilford, east London.

A search of the property led to the discovery of an Islamic State flag in a wardrobe.

In a police interview – Abu said there was “no snowball in hell’s chance of me committing an attack”.

He said he shared personal videos with family members “for comical value”.

“I parody many drill urban rap videos and artists. I accept I am a fan of drill artists who often glamorise street life whilst wearing balaclavas and body armour,” he said.

The defendants’ half brother Ahmed Aweys, 35, was jailed in January 2019 for disseminating a terrorist publication, according to agreed facts read in court.

Abu brothers court case
Wail Aweys and Suleyman Aweys (left to right not given) who are believed to have been killed in Syria (Met Police/PA)

Two other half brothers, Wail and Suleyman Aweys, are believed by the defendants to have travelled to Syria in 2015 and are presumed dead, jurors heard.

They were aged around 19 and 20 at the time they left the UK.

Sahayb Abu, of Dagenham, east London, denies preparation of terrorist acts.

His brother Muhamed Abu, 32, of South Norwood, south-east London, denies failing to disclose information about acts of terrorism.