Westminster attacker named, he was not under investigation

Carla Harmon
March 24, 2017

Scotland Yard said Masood was not the subject of any current investigations before Wednesday's outrage and there was "no prior intelligence about his intent to mount a terrorist attack".

Masood was born in Kent and detectives believe he was most recently living in the West Midlands.

Earlier on Thursday, British Prime Minister Theresa May said in Parliament that Masood was "a peripheral figure" who had been examined by MI5, Britain's domestic counterintelligence agency, but who had not been "part of the current intelligence picture".

But he was known to the police and his previous convictions included causing grievous bodily harm, possession of offensive weapons and public order offences. His most recent conviction was in 2003 for possession of a knife.

She disclosed Masood had spent time in jail, but said it was not for terrorist-related offences.

Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attack which killed three people and ended when an officer shot dead the attacker.

Eight people have been arrested and six addresses raided across London, Birmingham and elsewhere.

He told workers "I'm off to London today" before checking out on in the morning and driving to London in a hired Hyundai Tucson, the Sun reported.

The auto Masood used in Wednesday's attack had been hired from rental firm Enterprise's Spring Hill branch in Birmingham, suggesting he still had connections to the area.

Up to 40 other people were injured in the attack, with casualties including Britons, French children, Romanians, South Koreans, Greeks, and people from Germany, Poland, Ireland, China, Italy and the United States.

A member of staff at the hotel said on Thursday night: 'We have been instructed not to talk'.

The sick terrorist sped down a pavement on Westminster Bridge, mowing down pedestrians, before stabbing a policeman to death outside the Houses of Parliament. CNN identified the male victim as Kurt Cochran and his wife as Melissa, saying that they were in London celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary.

His victims on Westminster Bridge included a USA tourist from Utah who was celebrating his wedding anniversary and a "highly regarded and loved" member of college staff.

"[He was a] very religious, well- spoken man", the source said. Police officers also marked the occasion, standing silently outside the headquarters of London's Metropolitan Police nearby.

Aysha Frade, a 43-year-old teacher killed in the attack, was a British national whose mother is a Spanish national, a spokesman for Spain's Foreign Ministry told CNN. He stabbed PC Palmer before being shot dead, BBC added. In December, two men were found guilty of planning to give 3,000 pounds ($3,750) to Brussels bombing suspect Mohamed Abrini - widely known as "the man in the hat".

"You may know that today there are victims in London from 11 nations".

London is under extra security with a boost in both armed and unarmed officers.

He told staff at the £59-a-night Preston Park Hotel he was heading to London.

Media accounts in England say Cochran was knocked from the Westminster Bridge during the terror attack and landed on a concrete pad below.

Other reports by iNewsToday