Regarded as a ‘petty criminal’ Khalid Masood (52) was not considered by intelligence as presenting a terrorist threat before all at once on the 23 of March he killed at least four people and injured 20 in atrocious London attack.
A British-born Muslim convert, Masood had appeared on the periphery of previous terrorism investigations that brought him to the attention of Britain’s MI5 agency.
However he was not under investigation when he rushed across Westminster Bridge on Wednesday, targeting pedestrians with a hired car before running into the parliamentary grounds and fatally stabbing an unarmed policeman.
Some of Masood’s contacts were suspected of being keen to travel to join jihadi groups overseas, but Masood “himself never did so,” according to Reuters sources.
“Masood was not the subject of any current investigations and there was no prior intelligence about his intent to mount a terrorist attack,” London police said in a statement.
“However, he was known to police and has a range of previous convictions for assaults, including GBH (grievous bodily harm), possession of offensive weapons and public order offences.”
Islamic State claimed responsibility for Masood’s attack, although it was unclear what links – if any – he had with the militant group.