A weapons-obsessed student is facing years behind bars for planting a home-made bomb on a busy Tube train.
Former altar boy Damon Smith built the device at home with a £2 clock from Tesco after googling an al Qaeda article entitled Make A Bomb In The Kitchen Of Your Mom.
The 20-year-old, who grew up in Newton Abbot, Devon, denied possession of an explosive substance with intent but admitted the lesser offence of making a bomb hoax.
His lawyer told jurors he was no “hate-filled jihadi” and never meant to harm anyone.
But the jury at the Old Bailey rejected his explanation and found Smith guilty of the more serious charge after deliberating for two hours.
On October 20 last year, Smith, who was then 19, headed to his college in Holloway, north London, carrying a rucksack packed with explosives and ball-bearing shrapnel.
CCTV showed him travelling on the Jubilee Line before leaving the bag on the tube as he got off.
Commuters alerted the tube driver to the rucksack, who raised the alarm after spotting wires coming out of it.
Had Smith’s timed bomb work, it would have exploded as commuters were ordered off the platform, the Old Bailey was told.
Upon being arrested by counter-terrorism officers, Smith admitted making the bomb but claimed it was meant to be a Halloween joke.
A search of his home revealed an obsession with guns, explosives and other weapons.
A blank-firing self-loading pistol, BB gun, knuckleduster and knife were all recovered from the property.
Analysis showed he had watched YouTube videos on explosions and posted a picture of himself on Facebook in a Guy Fawkes mask holding handcuffs and a knuckleduster.
The jury heard Smith, who has an autism spectrum disorder, was interested in Islam – however he denied being an extremist.
He had exhibited an interested in bomb-making since the age of 10 and said that it was “something to do when he was bored”.
Smith, who grew up with his mother in the south-west, said he had thought about putting a bomb in a park but decided it would be “more funny” to delay train passengers.
His lawyer told jurors that Smith was no “hate-filled jihadi”, saying he intended to “make something that looked like a bomb but not function as one”
The judge adjourned sentencing until May 26 to allow time for a probation report on Smith’s risk to the public and further psychiatric reports.
more recommended stories
Pope Francis has apologised to the Indigenous people in Canada
I am deeply sorry. Sorry for.
Russia dispatches top diplomat on Africa tour to reverse propaganda campaign
Many governments in Africa and in.
Heat wave claims over 1500 lives across Europe
The soaring temperatures across Europe have.
Ukraine security infiltrated by Russian collaborators
Russian sympathizers are reporting the locations of.
U.K Infrastructure Overwhelmed By Sizzling Heat Wave
Infrastructure is under strain. Some train.
Soaring temperatures expected to cause major disruptions across the U.K.
For the first time temperatures of.
Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov claims Zelensky has Jewish blood ‘just like Hitler’
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov attacked.
Cooking oil shortages hit U.K. as war in Ukraine continues
Supermarket shoppers are preparing for limited.