A group of UK-based radical Islamists decided against carrying out suicide attacks so they would have a "long-term future" in committing acts of terrorism, a court heard today.
Within weeks of joining together, the al Qaida-inspired extremists plotted to bomb the London Stock Exchange and to organise for Britons to undergo terrorist training in Pakistan, London's Woolwich Crown Court was told.
Between them, the nine men possessed "almost every famous jihadi publication", including copies of an English-language online al Qaida magazine called Inspire, the prosecution said.
Inspire's first issue featured an article on how to "Make a bomb in the kitchen of your mom", complete with pictures and step-by-step instructions.
An expert concluded this would enable someone within a few hours to produce a "viable" device capable of killing or maiming people, the court heard.
Another issue included a feature on how to build the "ultimate mowing machine" by welding blades to a 4x4 car and driving it into pedestrians.
The author said such a vehicle could be used on a terrorist mission in Britain, noting: "In such countries, we may strike at the public at large."
The nine men - Mohammed Chowdhury, 21, and Shah Rahman, 28, both from London; Gurukanth Desai, 30, Abdul Miah, 25, and Omar Latif, 28, all from Cardiff; and Usman Khan, 20, Mohammed Shahjahan 27, Nazam Hussain, 26, and Mohibur Rahman, 27, all from Stoke-on-Trent - pleaded guilty last week to a variety of terrorist offences.
Prosecutor Andrew Edis QC, opening the Crown's case at the start of a three-day sentencing hearing, said: "In October 2010 these nine defendants decided to form a group whose purpose was to support and commit acts of terrorism in furtherance of their religious belief.
"Travel abroad was contemplated by some in order that they could acquire skills necessary to commit such acts effectively, acts of terrorism involving harm, often including death, serious injury, terror and very substantial economic harm to the community at which they were aimed."
He went on: "These defendants had in overview decided that ultimately they would be responsible for very serious acts of terrorism.
"What was observed during the indictment period was planning for the immediate future, not involving suicide attacks, so that there would be a long-term future which would include further acts of terrorism."