Jury begins deliberations in 'Three Musketeers' terror trial

The jury in the trial of four men accused of plotting a Lee Rigby-style attack has been sent out to begin its deliberations.

Members of the alleged terror cell, who called themselves the "Three Musketeers" in chats on the encrypted messaging app Telegram, were arrested last summer following an undercover operation by police and MI5.

Prosecutors say Naweed Ali, 29, Khobaib Hussain, 25, both of Sparkhill in Birmingham, Mohibur Rahman, 33, and Tahir Aziz, 38, of Stoke-on-Trent, were extremists planning an attack on British soil.

The Old Bailey has heard how a stash of weapons and ammunition, including a partially-built pipe bomb and a meat cleaver, was found in Ali's car in Birmingham on August 26 last year.

But the defendants deny preparing terrorist acts, claiming the incriminating evidence found in a JD Sports bag was planted by corrupt undercover officers.

The judge, Mr Justice Globe, sent the jury of three men and eight women out to begin their deliberations at 12.49pm on Tuesday after a four-month trial.

The twelfth juror was discharged last week after it emerged she had tried to play matchmaker for another woman on the jury who found a police officer involved in the case attractive.

One juror promised she would "definitely" remain true to her oath, but the other was told she could not continue after the judge found she had not been "candid" about trying to find out whether Detective Sergeant Ryan Chambers was single.