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Briton Junaid Hussain, Islamic State's Top Cyber Expert, 'Killed In US Drone Attack In Syria'

27/08/2015 09:28 BST | Updated 27/08/2015 09:59 BST

A British computer hacker who was a high-level Islamic State (IS) target is believed to have been killed in a US drone strike in Syria.

The American military and intelligence community is said to be poised to confirm the death of Junaid Hussain, from Birmingham.

A US official has reportedly said they have a "high level of confidence" that the 21-year-old was killed.

A strike specifically targeted Hussain while he was travelling in a vehicle in Syria, sources told CNN.

British authorities are yet to comment on the claims.

junaid hussain

Brit Junaid Hussain, who was a top cyber expert for the Islamic State, is believed to have been killed in a drone strike

Hussian was last month said to have been number three on the Pentagon's "kill list" of IS targets. He was involved in online hacking and recruitment activities for the terrorist group.

Hussain is thought to have fled Britain to travel to Syria in 2013 and in June this year was linked with an IS plot to attack an Armed Forces Day parade in south London.

It was reported that the plan to explode a pressure cooker bomb - killing soldiers and bystanders on the route - failed after Hussain unwittingly recruited an undercover investigator from The Sun to carry it out.

sally jones

There is no news on the fate of Hussian's wife Sally Jones

He allegedly told the investigator: "It will be big. We will hit the kuffar (unbelievers) hard InshAllah. Hit their soldiers in their own land. InshAllah. Soldiers that served in Iraq and Afganistan will be present. Jump in the crowd and detonate the bomb.

"They think they can kill Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan then come back to the UK and be safe. We'll hit them hard InshAllah."

Earlier this month Sky News made contact with Hussain and his wife, Sally Jones, 45, through fake identifies it created online.

Jones revealed plans to target the Queen during VJ commemorations and told one of its operatives she would show her how to make bombs.

The fate of Jones' has not been reported, although there were suggestions that she had slipped back into Britain a fortnight ago and had been spotted in Birmingham with two jihadis.

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In June 2012, Hussain, then aged 18, was jailed for six months after making prank calls to a counter-terror hotline.

He admitted making the nuisance calls and publishing former prime minister Tony Blair's address book in June the previous year.

Hussain was a member of TeaMpOisoN (TeamPoison), a group which had claimed responsibility for more than 1,400 offences where personal and private information has been illegally extracted from victims in the UK and around the world.

TeamPoison also claimed to be behind online hacking attacks involving foreign politicians, major international businesses, an international humanitarian agency and foreign law enforcement.