February 17, 2009 / 5:08 PM / 11 years ago

FACTBOX: The transatlantic airliner bomb plot case

LONDON (Reuters) - Eight Britons went on trial on Tuesday accused of involvement in a suspected Islamist plot to blow up transatlantic aircraft bound for North America from London, using bombs made out of liquid explosives.

Here are some of the allegations outlined by lead prosecutor Peter Wright at Woolwich Crown Court in east London.

— A memory stick owned by one of the suspects held detailed information about seven flights from London Heathrow’s Terminal 3 to U.S. and Canadian cities, most of them between August and October 2006.

These were United Airlines services to San Francisco, Chicago and Washington; Air Canada flights to Montreal and Toronto; and American Airlines flights to New York and Chicago.

— There were also conversations suggesting that there may have been up to 18 suicide bombers operating from different terminals, Wright told the court.

— A diary taken from one of the suspects, Abdullah Ahmad Ali, contained what the prosecution said was a blueprint for the plot.

The bombs would have been made from liquid explosives based on hydrogen peroxide mixed with an organic component such as tang, a substance used to make soft drinks.

These were to be smuggled on board the planes in 500 ml bottles of Lucozade or Oasis drinks. The explosive mixture would have been injected into the bottles through the base, so the drinks would appear to be unopened.

The bombs would have been set off using a homemade detonator, a chemical called hexamethylene triperoxide diamine available from household and commercial ingredients, Wright said. This would have been hidden in hollowed-out batteries and fired by a power source such as a disposable camera.

The bombers would carry another open soft drink of a different flavor to fool security, the prosecution said.

The blueprint also suggested the men should carry condoms and a pornographic magazine to convince authorities they were not “radicalized Islamists.”

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