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B.C. man accused of terrorism didn't want to die a martyr, trial hears

John Nuttall and Amanda Korody are shown in a still image taken from RCMP undercover video.
Image Credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-RCMP
February 26, 2015 - 7:00 AM

VANCOUVER - A British Columbia man accused of plotting to bomb the provincial legislature on Canada Day told an undercover RCMP officer that he didn't wish to die a martyr because he wanted to continue his mission, his trial has heard.

John Nuttall and his wife Amanda Korody were charged in July 2013 after an RCMP investigation, in which they were captured on video discussing their plans with an officer posing as an Arab businessman.

Nuttall told the officer numerous times that he wanted to embark on jihad to avenge what he believed was the Canadian military's mistreatment of Muslims abroad. Nuttall and Korody were recent converts to Islam, the trial has heard.

In a video played for the jury Wednesday, Nuttall tells the officer that he isn't interested in a suicide mission and wants to ensure he and Korody return alive. The video was recorded June 28, 2013.

"I'm not going to blow myself to kill a few taxpayers," says Nuttall, who is sitting in the passenger seat of the officer's truck, with Korody in the back.

"Sure, it will send a message, but I can send other messages."

Nuttall expresses concern that the planned attack will end with him and Korody either being captured or killed.

When they drop off the bombs at the legislature, whether that happens in the middle of the night or during the day, Nuttall says they risk being captured on security cameras. He worries that would reveal their identities to police and ultimately end with them being killed.

Hiding the bombs beforehand also increases the possibility that someone will find them and remove them, he says.

Another possibility, says Nuttall, would be to turn the plan into a suicide mission — a notion he quickly dismisses.

"The way to do this properly is (martyrdom), but that's not going to work," he says.

"I don't want to kill myself just to kill some taxpayers."

He suggests choosing a "softer target" than the B.C. legislature that would allow them to more easily avoid being killed. A day earlier, Nuttall suggested changing to another date instead of Canada Day because increased holiday security at the legislature and the crowds would make it difficult to escape.

Nuttall also made it clear he wants to be armed when they carry out their plan.

In another video, recorded earlier in the morning when Nuttall and Korody were alone in a motel room south of Vancouver, Nuttall becomes agitated when the subject of weapons comes up.

He curses several times and raises his voice as he insists he and Korody must be armed on Canada Day. He says he isn't doing anything without a gun.

"I will not — no," he says.

"He (the officer) can give it to me and say, 'Don't fire it until you see me fire it first or unless fired upon,' I'll accept those rules."

In previous videos, Nuttall has repeatedly asked the officer to secure automatic weapons, such as an AK-47, an Uzi or a sniper rifle. Nuttall has suggested his extensive experience playing paintball would help him use a gun, though he said Korody might need to be trained.

The officer has been non-committal on the subject, saying he'll look into it but not promising to acquire guns for the couple.

The Crown has told jurors they will see evidence that shows Nuttall and Korody place pressure-cooker bombs on the lawn of the legislature early in the morning on Canada Day. The bombs were timed to explode about 15 minutes apart starting at 10 a.m., the Crown has said, but the RCMP ensured the bombs were inert.

Nuttall has explained in the videos that he wants to launch an attack because of the Canadian military's involvement in Muslim countries.

Nuttall and Korody each face four charges, including conspiracy to commit murder and conspiracy to place explosives on behalf of a terrorist group.

They have both pleaded not guilty.

 

B.C. MAN ACCUSED IN TERROR CASE WANTED TO BE ARMED FOR CANADA DAY ATTACK: TRIAL

VANCOUVER - A British Columbia man was anxious about carrying out his alleged plan to attack the provincial legislature on Canada Day without guns and constantly worried about leaving even the smallest trace of DNA on his homemade pressure-cooker bombs, a terrorism trial has heard.

John Nuttall and his wife Amanda Korody were charged in July 2013 after an RCMP investigation that captured dozens of hours of video recordings.

The videos have followed the couple as they developed their plan and shared the details with an undercover officer, who they believed was an Arab businessman.

In the latest video played for the jury, recorded on June 28, 2013, Nuttall and Korody are alone in a motel room south of Vancouver, where they are building bombs using plans they found on the Internet.

Nuttall curses several times and raises his voice as he insists he and Korody must be armed on Canada Day. He says he isn't doing anything without a gun.

"I will not — no," he says.

"He (the officer) can give it to me and say, 'Don't fire it until you see me fire it first or unless fired upon,' I'll accept those rules."

In previous videos, Nuttall has repeatedly asked the officer to secure automatic weapons, such as an AK-47, an Uzi or a sniper rifle. Nuttall has suggested his extensive experience playing paintball would help him use a gun, though he said Korody might need to be trained.

The officer has been non-committal on the subject, saying he'll look into it but not promising to acquire guns for the couple.

Nuttall is also depicted in the videos as someone who is extremely worried about leaving anything that could contain DNA on the pressure-cooker bombs, tools, or in the hotel room.

He is seen cleaning the pressure cookers and wearing gloves whenever he handles them. Earlier, he has told Korody they must leave the hotel room "Jason Bourne-clean," referring to the spy movies.

In the latest video, he warns Korody that just by touching a nail — which he plans to include in the bombs as shrapnel — she may leave evidence that could be traced back to them. He scolds her for picking one up.

"If you hadn't have remembered which (nail you picked up), I would have had to go buy all new nails and I would have had to start all over again," he says.

The Crown has told jurors they will see evidence that shows Nuttall and Korody place pressure-cooker bombs on the lawn of the legislature early in the morning on Canada Day. The bombs were timed to explode about 15 minutes apart starting at 10 a.m., the Crown has said, but the RCMP ensured the bombs were inert.

Nuttall has explained in the videos that he wants to launch an attack because of the Canadian military's involvement in Muslim countries.

Nuttall and Korody each face four charges, including conspiracy to commit murder and conspiracy to place explosives on behalf of a terrorist group.

They have both pleaded not guilty.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2015
The Canadian Press

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