LONDON: A man suspected of stabbing two people to death in a terror attack on London Bridge was a former prisoner convicted for terrorism offences and released last year, police said Saturday.
Police identified the man, who was shot dead by officers after Friday’s attack, as 28-year-old Usman Khan, saying they were not actively seeking any other suspects in relation to the incident.
“This individual was known to authorities, having been convicted in 2012 for terrorism offences. He was released from prison in December 2018 on licence,” Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said in a statement.
Three more people were wounded in the daylight stabbing spree which revived memories of a three-man attack on London Bridge two years ago that killed eight.
Basu said that the suspect had been living in the Staffordshire region of central England and officers were searching an address in that area.
“The circumstances, as we currently understand them, are that the attacker attended an event earlier on Friday afternoon at Fishmonger’s Hall called ‘Learning Together’,” the statement said.
“We believe that the attack began inside before he left the building and proceeded onto London Bridge, where he was detained and subsequently confronted and shot by armed officers.”
According to The Telegraph, Khan has been accused of “trying to establish a terror training camp at his family land in Azad Kashmir.
Footage filmed by eyewitnesses and shared on social media showed a scrum of people tackling the suspect on the ground before the police arrived.
One man, wearing a suit and tie, was seen carrying a large knife away from the group.
Tour guide Stevie Hurst, who ran from his car to the scene, told BBC radio that “everyone was just on top of him trying to bundle him to the ground”.
“I saw that the knife was still in his hand so I just put a foot in to try and kick him in the head: we were trying to do as much as we could to try and dislodge the knife,” he said.