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Luke Skelton.jpg© Counter Terrorism Policing North-East

A teenager has been convicted of planning a far-right terror attack targeting police stations in Newcastle.

Luke Skelton, now 19, carried out hostile reconnaissance and wrote a manifesto and “final note” to spread his message after the attack.

He denied preparing acts of terrorism in the year to October 2021, but was convicted by a jury at Teesside Crown Court.

The former student, who is autistic, said he did not want to harm anyone and that he could not remember why he was looking at weapons and explosives online. 

But prosecutors said he held racist, sexist, Islamophobic and antisemitic views, “lionised” far-right terror attacks around the world and saw violence as a way to achieve his political objectives.

In his final note, Skelton wrote that he aimed to “accelerate the coming collapse and racial war” in Britain, when people would die “in the thousands”.

The note was drafted in January 2021, months after staff at his school had reported him to the government’s Prevent counter-terrorism scheme.

Prosecutor Nicholas de la Poer QC told jurors that teachers at Gateshead College “became concerned” during the first term of his second year, when Skelton was 17.

A referral was made to Prevent in November 2020, but Skelton did not have his first meeting with an “intervention provider” until the following March. By Lizzie Dearden, The Independent

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