Michael Adebolajo, 29, and Michael Adebowale, 22, two British born Nigerian converts to Islam who killed a British arrmy outside Woolwich barracks in south-east London in May, Lee Rigby, have been found guilty of murder.
Adebolajo had claimed he was a “soldier of Allah” and the killing was an act of war. The BBC reported that:
The men were found not guilty of attempting to murder a police officer at the scene.
The jury of eight women and four men took approximately 90 minutes to reach its verdict.
‘Relatives in tears’
Relatives of Fusilier Rigby broke down in tears as the verdicts were given.
They said they were satisfied that justice had been done, adding: “This has been the toughest time of our lives. No one should have to go through what we have been through as a family.”
Mr Justice Sweeney ordered that the decisions be heard in silence. He said he will pass sentence after a key appeal court ruling on the use of whole life terms in January.
Fusilier Rigby, 25, was a father of one
Adebolajo and Adebowale drove a car into Fusilier Rigby at 30-40mph, before dragging him into the road and attacking him with knives and attempting to decapitate him with a meat cleaver.
The jury heard the men chose their victim because he was “the soldier that was spotted first”.
In a police interview Adebolajo said he and Adebowale decided to lie in wait near the barracks and targeted Fusilier Rigby because he was wearing a Help for Heroes hooded top and carrying a camouflage rucksack.
Nigerians have argued that they were British and not really Nigerians as they were born and raised in the UK. “Many British born Nigerians don’t even see themselves as British,” says Ibrahim Bature, a political analyst who spoke to NEWISSUES via phone.