February 27, 2015 - 5:00 AM
VANCOUVER - A British Columbia man accused of plotting to bomb the provincial legislature on Canada Day appeared eager to carry out the attack in the days leading up to the holiday, telling an undercover RCMP officer they were in the middle of a war, his trial has heard.
John Nuttall and his wife Amanda Korody are accused of planning a foiled terrorist attack in Victoria on July 1, 2013. They were arrested after an undercover investigation that captured dozens of hours of video and audio recordings, which are now being played for a jury.
The latest video, recorded on June 28, features Nuttall and Korody with an undercover officer, who they believe is an Arab businessman helping them execute their plan. The officer is driving the couple around the Vancouver area as they pick up bomb-making supplies and then visit a mosque.
Nuttall is still working out the details of his plan, such as where in Victoria they should plant their homemade pressure-cooker bombs and how they should set them off.
"I want some payback," Nuttall, a recent convert to Islam, tells the officer in the video played in B.C. Supreme Court on Thursday.
"I want to kill some (non-believers). It's justified fully. I need no fatwa, brother. I am clean in my heart. I know what I'm doing is right."
Later, Nuttall tells the officer: "This is a war."
The jury has watched hours of surveillance video, including many instances in which Nuttall refers to Islam to justify his plans. He has railed against the Canadian military's involvement in Muslim countries and declared his hatred of Canada.
Nuttall has previously suggested he converted to Islam about a year and a half earlier and immediately started asking questions about jihad.
He found the plans for homemade pressure-cooker bombs in an al-Qaida-affiliated magazine titled Inspire, which he downloaded on the Internet.
"They're going to say we're al-Qaida," says Nuttall, referring to how law enforcement will react if he and Korody are identified.
"I guess we are al-Qaida, because I got the idea out of their magazine. They recruited me with their magazine. I'm al-Qaida then. I'm proud to say that."
By this point, Nuttall and Korody's plan has yet to fully develop. While earlier conversations have focused on setting off an explosion at Canada Day festivities at the provincial legislature, Nuttall has also suggested other approaches.
He has said it will be difficult to escape undetected and unharmed at the legislature.
If they drop the bombs off in the middle of the night, security guards might spot them or someone might remove the bombs, he has noted. If they instead place them in backpacks and drop them in the crowd, someone might see them or they might be captured on security cameras.
He suggests they choose a "softer" target, such as a bank, a bar or an area near Victoria's city hall.
Another possibility, says Nuttall, would be to set off a number of bombs at different times and at various locations in the city.
"If they're on timers, we could freak the town out for two whole days," he says.
"One could blow up on (Canada Day), we could set it for four hours — boom, everyone is freaking out. Twelve hours later, when the fireworks are going off, then they'll be wondering if there's more. They'll evacuate the whole city."
The Crown has told jurors they will see videos and photos depicting the couple dropping off three pressure-cooker bombs on the legislature lawn in the early morning of July 1. The RCMP ensured the bombs could not explode, the Crown has said.
Nuttall and Korody have both pleaded not guilty.
News from © The Canadian Press, 2015