Officer describes terrorist plot as ‘harebrained’

Terrorist Plot

VANCOUVER – A series of plans proposed by a British Columbia man on trial for plotting to blow up the provincial legislature was “hokey and harebrained,” an undercover officer has told a Vancouver court.

The officer, who cannot be identified, said in B.C. Supreme Court Thursday that John Nuttall’s hands were shaking nervously as he tabled his ideas that included hijacking a nuclear submarine and firing rockets at a Vancouver Island military base.

Nuttall and his wife Amanda Korody have pleaded not guilty to four terrorism-related charges stemming from an elaborate police sting in 2013.

In covert audio played in court on Thursday, Nuttall is heard telling the officer, who was posing as a high-ranking terrorist, that he wasn’t sure exactly whose idea it ultimately was to plant pressure-cooker bombs on the legislature grounds.

“Whose plan is this?” the officer is heard asking Nuttall during a supposedly private meeting.

“It’s kind of all of our plan,” replied Nuttall, referring to other undercover officers involved in the sting. “We all kind of chipped in.”

When pressed further, Nuttall said it was the best they could come up with in the three days available, and that it would have been nice to have more time.

The officer testifying in court played the role of the supposed terrorist leader who Nuttall had to convince to provide the C4 plastic explosives.

In her cross-examination, defence lawyer Marilyn Sandford highlighted how Nuttall habitually deferred to another undercover officer, posing as an Arab businessman, for direction in how much C4 was needed.

Nuttall ultimately pegged the amount at four kilograms for three pressure-cooker bombs.

Following his script, the apparent munitions peddler eventually blows up at Nuttall, berating him for having wasted his time with a poorly formulated plan.

“This is just a bunch of crap, just a bunch of crap you see on CNN,” he fumes in the audio recording. “I’m going to wait in my car and cool down a little bit because I’m very angry right now.”

The trial has run nearly 40 days and will continue Monday.

Nuttall and Korody were recent converts to Islam, and evidence already presented in court has heard they saw themselves as soldiers in a holy war with the western world.

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