Every Picture Tells a Story


While The Times focuses on a “mastermind” ring-leader who was convicted today of conspiracy to commit murder, other news sites choose to print a picture of all three of those convicted.

The Telegraph places the one with the funny eyes in the middle:

While the BBC put him on the right:

And The Guardian choose to put him on the left:

The Guardian’s headline bears closer examination, as it’s typical of the reporting of this story. “Three guilty of liquid bomb terror plot.”

Were they? Actually, the jury did not reach a verdict on the larger question of plotting to carry so-called “liquid bombs” on aeroplanes (which is the reason why you’re not allowed to carry liquid items onto planes anymore). You have to scroll almost to the bottom of the article for this bit:

The jurors rejected the prosecution claims that Ali was responsible for an unprecedented airline bomb plot.

Meanwhile, four others were not found guilty (though they had pleaded guilty to a fairly low level charge of causing a “public nuisance”).

This trial has been running since April, and the Jury deliberated for 50 hours before deciding they couldn’t reach a verdict on the whole liquid bombs on planes thing. Since 2006, air travellers have been massively inconvenienced because of fears of this kind of binary liquid bomb plot (straight out of the movies, right?), even though there is some scepticism as to whether it’s really feasible to mix chemicals in an aeroplane toilet.

Make up your own minds, but this trial of seven terrorists has collapsed for at least 4 of the accused, and found three guilty of a murder conspiracy charge unrelated to liquid bombs on planes.