The 1999 London nail bombings were a series of bomb explosions in London, England. Over three successive weekends between 17 and 30 April 1999, homemade nail bombs were detonated respectively in Brixton, south London; Brick Lane in the East End; and in The Admiral Duncan pub in Soho in the West End. Each bomb contained up to 1,500 four-inch nails, in holdalls that were left in public spaces. The bombs killed three people, including a pregnant woman, and injured 140 people, four of whom lost limbs.
On 2 May 1999, the Metropolitan Police Anti-Terrorist Branch charged 22-year-old David Copeland with murder. Copeland, who became known as the "London Nail Bomber", was a Neo-Nazi militant and a former member of two far-right political groups, the British National Party and then the National Socialist Movement. The bombings were aimed at London's Black, British Bengali and gay communities. He was convicted of murder in 2000 and given six concurrent life sentences.
|1999 London bombings|
1999 London nail bombings (Greater London)
1999 London nail bombings (the United Kingdom)
|Date||17 April 1999-|
30 April 1999
|Target||Black British, British Bengali and Gay populations|
|White supremacist terrorism, bombings, murder|
|Motive||attempt at starting a race war in England|
The first bombing, on Saturday, 17 April 1999, was in Electric Avenue, Brixton; an area of south London with a large black population. The bomb was made using explosives from fireworks, taped inside a sports bag, primed and left at Brixton Market. The Brixton Market traders became suspicious, and one of them, Gary Shilling, moved the bag to a less crowded area after seeing perpetrator Copeland acting suspiciously. Two further moves of the bomb occurred by unconvinced traders, including the bomb being removed from the bag, which is when it ended up by the Iceland supermarket. Concerned traders called the police, who arrived at the scene just as the bomb detonated at 5:25 pm. Forty-eight people were injured, many of them seriously because of the four-inch nails that were packed around the bomb. The explosion was strong, sending nails in all directions, blowing windows and blasting a parked car across the street.
The second bomb, on the following Saturday, 24 April, was aimed at Brick Lane in the East End of London, which has a large Bangladeshi community. There is a street market on Sundays, but perpetrator Copeland mistakenly tried to plant the bomb on Saturday when the street was less busy. Unwilling to change the timer on the bomb, he left it instead in a black Reebok bag on Hanbury Street. There it was picked up by a man, who brought it to the police station on Brick Lane, which was shut. He had placed it in the boot of his Ford Sierra car which was parked outside number 42 Brick Lane, where it exploded. Thirteen people were injured, and surrounding buildings and cars were severely damaged. At the time, Muslims were gathering outside the East London Mosque for prayers.
The third and final bomb was planted and detonated on the evening of Friday, 30 April at The Admiral Duncan pub on Old Compton Street in Soho, the heart of London's gay community. At the time the pub and the street outside were crowded because the evening was the start of a Bank Holiday weekend. The unattended sports bag containing the bomb, which was taped inside, was noticed by patrons of the Admiral Duncan; however, the bomb exploded at 6:37 pm just as the bag was being investigated by the pub manager, Mark Taylor. Three people were killed and a total of seventy-nine were injured, many of them seriously. Four of the survivors had to have limbs amputated.
|Brick Lane||13 (0)|
At the gay pub bombing in Soho, Andrea Dykes, 27, four months pregnant with her first child, died along with her friends and hosts for the evening, Nick Moore, 31, and John Light, 32, who was to be the baby's godfather. Andrea's husband, Julian, who married in August 1997, was seriously injured. The four friends from Essex had met up in the Admiral Duncan to celebrate Andrea's pregnancy.
Following the Brixton bombing, officials initially emphasised that IRA involvement was unlikely and that it was more likely to be the work of right-wing terrorists following the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry that was released at the time, or a 'copycat' Edgar Pearce. On 19 April, Combat 18, a far-right organisation, claimed responsibility via telephone. By the time of the Brick Lane bombing a week later, which the police linked with the Brixton bombing, it was clear that a racist entity was behind the attacks. It also ignited fears of racial tensions, particularly after the release of the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry in February, and as Brixton was the scene of race riots in 1981.
Although these had been described by the police as specifically race-hate attacks, they had issued a warning that a gay bar could potentially be the bomber's next target, and The Yard – a pub in the Soho area – had displayed a poster warning customers to be alert. On Thursday 29 April, CCTV footage from the Brixton attack was given wide publicity after an image of the suspected bomber was identified on it. This caused Copeland to bring forward his planned bombing of the Admiral Duncan to Friday evening. Paul Mifsud, a colleague of Copeland, recognised him from the footage and alerted the police about an hour and 20 minutes before the third bombing, at the Admiral Duncan pub.
The Soho pub bombing was linked to the previous ones by police, with far-rightists once again the prime suspects. Two hours after the bomb, a person claiming to be from the putative far-right White Wolves organisation called the BBC, claiming the group's responsibility to the attack. It was feared Jews, Chinese and Irish would be targeted next. Some synagogues stepped up security as a result.
Copeland was arrested that night once the police obtained his address, a rented room in Sunnybank Road, Cove, Hampshire. He admitted carrying out the three bombings as soon as he opened the door to the police, telling them, "Yeah, they were all down to me. I did them on my own." He showed them his room, where two Nazi flags were hanging on a wall, along with a collection of photographs and newspaper stories about bombs. 
David James Copeland was born on 15 May 1976, in Hanworth in the London Borough of Hounslow, to a working-class couple. His father was an engineer and his mother was a housewife. He lived for most of his childhood with his parents and two brothers in Yateley, Hampshire, attending Yateley School, where he obtained seven GCSEs before leaving in 1992. Journalist Nick Ryan wrote that, as a teenager, Copeland feared he was homosexual; when his parents sang along to The Flintstones theme on television—"we'll have a gay old time"—he reportedly believed they were sending him a message. As an older teenager, he began listening to heavy metal bands and earned himself the nickname "Mr Angry". Ryan wrote that the staff at his school have no recollection of him during this period. It was as if he had become invisible.
After his arrest following the bombings, he told psychiatrists that he had started having sadistic dreams when he was about twelve years old, including dreams or fantasies that he had been reincarnated as an SS officer with access to women as slaves. He left school for a series of failed jobs, reportedly blaming immigrants for the difficult job market. He became involved in petty crime, drinking, and drug abuse. His father was eventually able to get him a job as an engineer's assistant on the London Underground.
His father called him "fairly intelligent" as a child. His parents separated when he was 19, and his mother told lawyers and psychiatrists after the arrest that he was a "happy lad" and showed no sign of what was to come. According to psychiatrists, Copeland also had a higher than average IQ. One of the doctors believed his behaviour started to change around 1995 when he was 19, isolating himself from friends and family.
Copeland joined the far-right British National Party in May 1997, at the age of twenty-one. He acted as a steward at a BNP meeting, in the course of which he came into contact with the BNP leadership and was photographed standing next to John Tyndall, the leader of the party at the time. It was during this period that Copeland read The Turner Diaries, and first learned how to make bombs using fireworks with alarm clocks as timers, after downloading a so-called “terrorist's handbook” from the internet. He left the BNP in 1998, regarding it as insufficiently hardline because it was not willing to engage in paramilitary action, and joined the smaller National Socialist Movement, becoming its regional leader for Hampshire just weeks before the start of his bombing campaign. It was around this time that he visited his family doctor and was prescribed anti-depressants after telling the doctor he felt he was losing his mind.
Copeland maintained he had worked alone and had not discussed his plans with anyone. During police interviews, he admitted holding neo-Nazi views, and talked of his desire to spread fear and trigger a race war. He told police, "My main intent was to spread fear, resentment and hatred throughout this country; it was to cause a racial war." He said, "If you've read The Turner Diaries, you know the year 2000 there'll be the uprising and all that, racial violence on the streets. My aim was political. It was to cause a racial war in this country. There'd be a backlash from the ethnic minorities, then all the white people will go out and vote BNP."
After his arrest, Copeland wrote to BBC correspondent Graeme McLagan, denying that he had schizophrenia, and telling McLagan that the "Zog" or Zionist Occupation Government was pumping him full of drugs in order to sweep him under the carpet. He wrote, "I bomb the blacks, Pakis, degenerates. I would have bombed the Jews as well if I'd got a chance." Ryan writes that Copeland's first idea had been to bomb the Notting Hill Carnival, after seeing images of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics bombing. When asked by police why he had targeted ethnic minorities, he replied, "Because I don't like them, I want them out of this country, I believe in the master race." Whilst on remand, Copeland also wrote to crime writer Bernard O'Mahoney, who posed as a woman called Patsy Scanlon in the hope of duping Copeland into confessing. According to The Independent, the letters helped secure a conviction by giving prosecutors evidence about Copeland's state of mind.
Copeland's mental state was assessed at Broadmoor Hospital. He was diagnosed by five psychiatrists as having paranoid schizophrenia, while one diagnosed a personality disorder not serious enough to avoid a charge of murder. There was no dispute that he was mentally ill, but the extent of this, and whether he was unable to take responsibility for his actions, became a matter of contention. At the Old Bailey, Copeland's plea of guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility was not accepted by the prosecution or jury.
He was convicted of three counts of murder and planting bombs on 30 June 2000, and given six concurrent life sentences. The trial judge spoke of his doubt that it would ever be safe to release Copeland.
On 2 March 2007, the High Court decided that he should remain in prison for at least 50 years, ruling out his release until 2049 at the earliest, when he would be 73. Copeland appealed; on 28 June 2011, the Court of Appeal upheld the ruling.
In June 2014, Copeland attacked a fellow inmate at HM Prison Belmarsh with a shiv, an improvised weapon made from razor blades attached to a toothbrush handle. In October 2015, he pleaded guilty to wounding with intent and was sentenced to a further three years in prison, of which he will serve 18 months.
On Thursday 21 July 2005, four attempted bomb attacks disrupted part of London's public transport system two weeks after the 7 July 2005 London bombings. The explosions occurred around midday at Shepherd's Bush, Warren Street and Oval stations on the London Underground, and on London Buses route 26 in Bethnal Green on Hackney Road. A fifth bomber dumped his device without attempting to set it off.Connecting lines and stations were closed and evacuated. Metropolitan Police later said the intention was to cause large-scale loss of life, but only the detonators of the bombs exploded, probably causing the popping sounds reported by witnesses, and only one minor injury was reported. The suspects fled the scenes after their bombs failed to explode.
On Friday 22 July, CCTV images of four suspects wanted in connection with the bombings were released. Two of the men shown in these images were identified by police on Monday 25 July as Muktar Said Ibrahim and Yasin Hassan Omar. The resultant manhunt was described by the Metropolitan police commissioner Sir Ian Blair as "the greatest operational challenge ever faced" by the Met. During the manhunt, police misidentified Jean Charles de Menezes as one of the suspected bombers and shot and killed him.By 29 July, police had arrested all four of the main bombing suspects from 21 July attempted bombings. Yasin Hassan Omar was arrested by police on 27 July, in Birmingham. On 29 July, two more suspects were arrested in London. A fourth suspect, Osman Hussein, was arrested in Rome, Italy, and later extradited to the UK. Police also arrested numerous other people in the course of their investigations.
On 9 July 2007, four defendants, Muktar Said Ibrahim, 29, Yasin Hassan Omar, 26, Ramzi Mohammed, 25, and Hussain Osman, 28, were found guilty of conspiracy to murder. The four attempted bombers were each sentenced to life imprisonment, with a minimum of 40 years' imprisonment.21 July 2005 London bombings trial
On 15 January 2007 six men appeared at Woolwich Crown Court in connection with the alleged 21 July 2005 London bombings on London public transport.
On 9 July 2007 the jury found Muktar Said Ibrahim, Yassin Omar, Hussain Osman, and Ramzi Mohammed guilty of conspiracy to murder, and each man was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum of 40 years. The jury failed to agree on verdicts on two other defendants, and a retrial started on 12 November 2007.7 July 2005 London bombings
The 7 July 2005 London bombings, often referred to as 7/7, were a series of coordinated terrorist suicide attacks in London, United Kingdom, which targeted commuters travelling on the city's public transport system during the morning rush hour.
Four radical Islamic terrorists separately detonated three homemade bombs in quick succession aboard London Underground trains across the city and, later, a fourth on a double-decker bus in Tavistock Square. The train bombings occurred on the Circle line near Aldgate and at Edgware Road, and on the Piccadilly line near Russell Square.
Fifty-two people of 18 different nationalities, all of whom were UK residents, were killed, and more than 700 were injured in the attacks, making it Britain's deadliest terrorist incident since the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 near Lockerbie, Scotland, and England's deadliest since the 1974 Birmingham pub bombings, as well as the country's first Islamist suicide attack.
The explosions were caused by triacetone triperoxide-based IEDs packed into backpacks. The bombings were followed two weeks later by a series of attempted attacks that failed to cause injury or damage. The 7 July attacks occurred the day after London had won its bid to host the 2012 Olympic Games.7 July 2005 London bombings memorials and services
Following the events of the 7 July 2005 London bombings, the United Kingdom and other nations have devised many ways to honour the dead and missing. Most of these memorials included moments of silence, candle-lit vigils, and laying of flowers at the bombing sites. Foreign leaders have also honoured the dead by ordering their flags to be half-staffed, signed books of condolences at embassies of the United Kingdom, and issued messages of support and condolences to the British people.Attacks on the London Underground
This is a list of deliberate attacks on the infrastructure, staff or passengers of the London Underground that have caused considerable damage, injury or death.Death of Jean Charles de Menezes
Jean Charles da Silva e de Menezes (pronounced [ʒeˈɐ̃ ˈʃaʁlis dʒi meˈnezis] in Brazilian Portuguese; 7 January 1978 – 22 July 2005) was a Brazilian man killed by officers of the London Metropolitan Police Service at Stockwell station on the London Underground, after he was wrongly deemed to be one of the fugitives involved in the previous day's failed bombing attempts. These events took place two weeks after the London bombings of 7 July 2005, in which 52 people were killed.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) launched two investigations. Stockwell 1, the findings of which were initially kept secret, concluded that none of the officers would face disciplinary charges. Stockwell 2 strongly criticised the police command structure and communications to the public. In July 2006, the Crown Prosecution Service said that there was insufficient evidence to prosecute any named individual police officers in a personal capacity, although a criminal prosecution of the Commissioner in his official capacity on behalf of his police force was brought under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, on the failure of the duty of care due to Menezes. The Commissioner was found guilty and his office was fined. On 12 December 2008 an inquest returned an open verdict.Germaine Lindsay
Germaine Maurice Lindsay (23 September 1985 – 7 July 2005), also known as Abdullah Shaheed Jamal, was one of the four terrorists who detonated bombs on three trains on the London Underground and a bus in central London during the 7 July 2005 London bombings, killing 56 people (including themselves), and injuring more than 700. Lindsay detonated the bomb that killed himself and 26 other people on a train travelling on the Piccadilly line between King's Cross St Pancras and Russell Square tube stations.Hasib Hussain
Hasib Mir Hussain (Urdu: حسیب میر حسین; 16 September 1986 – 7 July 2005) was one of four terrorists who detonated bombs on three trains on the London Underground and one bus in central London during the 7 July 2005 London bombings.
Hussain detonated a bomb on the No. 30 bus that exploded in Tavistock Square, killing 13 of the 52 people killed in the suicide bombings, and himself. Investigators found his body and personal effects on the bus. At the age of 18, he was the youngest of the group of four. The other men were Shehzad Tanweer, Germaine Lindsay, and Mohammad Sidique Khan.List of major crimes in the United Kingdom
This is a list of major crimes in the United Kingdom that received significant media coverage or led to changes in legislation.List of rampage killers (other incidents)
This section of the list of rampage killers contains mass murders by single perpetrators that do not fit into the upper categories, like arson fires, poisonings, bombings, deliberate airliner crashes and train derailments caused by sabotage. Cases with more than one offender are not included.
A rampage killer has been defined as follows:
A rampage involves the (attempted) killing of multiple persons least partly in public space by a single physically present perpetrator using (potentially) deadly weapons in a single event without any cooling-off period.
This list should contain every case with at least one of the following features:
Rampage killings with 6 or more dead
Rampage killings with at least 4 people killed and least ten victims overall (dead plus injured)
Rampage killings with at least 2 people killed and least 12 victims overall (dead plus injured)
An incidence of rampage killing shall not be included in this list if it does not include at least two people killed.
In all cases the perpetrator is not counted among those killed or injured.List of terrorist incidents in Great Britain
There have been many motives behind terrorism in Great Britain. During the 20th century, most attacks were carried out by various Irish Republican Army (IRA) groups and were linked to the Northern Ireland conflict (the Troubles). In the late 20th century there were also attacks by Middle Eastern terrorist groups, most of which were linked to the Arab–Israeli conflict. During the 21st century, most terrorist incidents in Britain have been linked to Islamic fundamentalism. A perspective has been put forth that terrorist incidents in Britain may be growing due to Britain's role in the Iraq War and its subsequent role in the Syrian Civil War, however this has not always found support. This theory is further called into question by the fact that most terrorist attacks occur outside of Europe, and in Muslim majority countries.Between 1971 and 2001, there were 430 terrorist-related deaths in Great Britain. Of these, 125 deaths were linked to the Northern Ireland conflict, and 305 deaths were linked to other causes – most of the latter deaths occurred in the Lockerbie bombing. Since 2001, there have been almost 100 terrorist-related deaths in Great Britain, the vast majority linked to Islamic jihad and religious extremism.List of terrorist incidents in London
This is a list of incidents in London that have been labelled as "terrorism". It includes various bomb attacks and other politically driven violent incidents.London attack
London attack may refer to any of the following attacks that have occurred within London, London metropolitan area, City of London, Lundenwic, Londinium, or County of London:
Actuated attacksList of terrorist incidents in London
1973 Old Bailey bombing
1982 Hyde Park and Regent's Park bombings
1983 Harrods bombing
1992 Baltic Exchange bombing
1993 Bishopsgate bombing
1996 Docklands bombing
1999 London nail bombings
7 July 2005 London bombings
2017 London Bridge attack
2017 Finsbury Park attack
Westminster attack, attacks in the City of Westminster or Westminster; part of London
2017 Westminster attack
Second World War bombings of London by Nazi Germany's Luftwaffe, see The Blitz
First World War bombings of London by Imperial Germany, see German strategic bombing during World War I
1381 Raid on London, see Wat Tyler's Rebellion
1066 Battle of Southwark, see Battle of Hastings
3rd century raids by Saxon pirates, see History of London
AD 60 sacking of Londinium by the Iceni, see IceniAttempted attacksGunpowder Plot (1605) of Guy Fawkes et al.
21 July 2005 London bombingsMohammad Sidique Khan
Mohammad Sidique Khan (20 October 1974 – 7 July 2005) was the oldest of the four homegrown suicide bombers and believed to be the leader responsible for the 7 July 2005 London bombings, in which bombs were detonated on three London Underground trains and one bus in central London suicide attacks, killing 56 people including the attackers and injured over 700. Khan bombed the Edgware Road train killing himself and six other people.
On 1 September 2005, a videotape emerged featuring Khan. The videotape, shown by Al Jazeera Television, also shows Ayman al-Zawahiri, who is the highest leader of al-Qaeda. The two men do not appear together, and the British government says that al-Qaeda was not connected with the bombing. The Home Office believes the tape was edited after the suicide attacks and dismisses it as evidence of al-Qaeda's involvement. In the film, Khan declares, "I and thousands like me have forsaken everything for what we believe" and refers to his expectation that the media would already have painted a picture of him in accordance with government "spin". He goes on to say, "Your democratically elected governments continually perpetrate atrocities against my people all over the world. Your support makes you directly responsible. We are at war and I am a soldier. Now you too will taste the reality of this situation."Pastoral care for gay Catholics
Pastoral care for gay Catholics consists of the ministry and outreach the Catholic Church provides to LGBT Catholics. There are official organizations, such as Courage International, as well as stand-alone events, scholarly studies, comments, and teachings from the highest levels of the Catholic Church, as well as individual parish outreach.Reactions to the 2005 London bombings
The 7 July 2005 London bombings were a series of suicide attacks carried out by homegrown terrorists on London's public transport network during the morning rush hour.
The bombings, three on the London Underground and one on a bus, killed 52 people and prompted a massive response from the emergency services, and in the immediate aftermath the almost-complete shut down of the city's transport system. Over the following hours and days there were several security alerts throughout the United Kingdom, and in some foreign cities. London largely returned to normality in the following days, though with several further security alerts and a reduced service on the Underground.Shehzad Tanweer
Shehzad Tanweer (15 December 1982 – 7 July 2005) was one of four men who detonated explosives in three trains on the London Underground and one bus in central London during the 7 July 2005 London bombings. 52 people were killed and over 700 wounded in the attacks.
Tanweer was named by Scotland Yard as the man who detonated a bomb while travelling eastbound on the Circle Line between Liverpool Street and Aldgate, killing both himself and seven of the 52 killed in the attacks. The other three men were identified as Hasib Hussain, Germaine Lindsay, and Mohammad Sidique Khan. All four homegrown terrorists were killed in the explosions.Timeline of the 2005 London bombings
The following is a timeline of the 7 July 2005 London bombings and 21 July 2005 London bombings.
All times are in British Summer Time (BST or UTC+01:00).