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Hair removal strips and bags of chocolate in first images of terrorist’s scruffy flat

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The first pictures have emerged of the scruffy flat used by Usman Khan to prepare his terror attack at Fishmongers’ Hall.

The photos were taken by police after the November 2019 attack in London and show the remnants of his preparations littered around the property.

The clingfilm used to make the fake explosives was in the bedroom of the Stafford flat, along with a number of small water bottles he may have experimented with.

The monitoring device for his prison tag was on the chest of drawers
Image: The monitoring device for his prison tag was on the chest of drawers. Pic: Gardham/MetPolice
Large bags of chocolate were found in the kitchen
Image: Large bags of chocolate were found in the kitchen. Pic: Gardham/MetPolice

There was also the packet of eyebrow removal strips he used to remove his body hair in ritual preparation for his martyrdom.

The monitoring device for the tag he had to wear after his release from prison was on the chest of drawers, along with a tubigrip bandage and cold gel to treat a gym injury.

In the kitchen there were boxes of Celebrations and Quality Street chocolates, and the last of the four knives he had bought for the attack.

A plastic box full of dozens of video games was found in the sitting room, while a mat on the coffee table read “eat, drink, enjoy”.

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The torn-up packaging from the knives was found in the wheelie bins outside, along with wiring from his Xbox and a dismantled Energizer battery charger used for his fake suicide belt.

Khan moved into the flat a few months before the attack
Image: Khan moved into the flat a few months before the attack. Pic: Gardham/MetPolice
Packaging from the knives was found in the wheelie bins outside
Image: Packaging from the knives was found in the wheelie bins outside. Pic: Gardham/MetPolice

Khan had moved into the top floor, one-bedroom flat in a Victorian block in Wolverhampton Road, Stafford, on 24 September 2019.

Khan stabbed Jack Merritt, 25, and Saskia Jones, 23, workers on a Cambridge University prisoner rehab project, during a conference at Fishmongers’ Hall on 29 November 2019.

He was wearing an imitation suicide vest and was shot dead by armed police on London Bridge, 13 minutes after the attack began.

Khan did most of the preparation for his attack the day before he travelled to London, the inquest into his shooting heard.

London terror attack victims
Image: Jack Merritt, 25, and Saskia Jones, 23, were killed in the attack

He bought knives from a market stall, had a haircut and shaved his body hair in preparation for martyrdom.

The inquest heard that Khan went into a Tesco Extra in Stafford on 20 November to buy a roll of T-Rex gaffer tape, which he used to construct the fake suicide belt.

Two days later, he went to TK Maxx at Friary Green retail park, where he bought a Dernier man-bag – later found in the toilet cubicle at the hall.

At 10.36am on 28 November, the day before the attack, Khan withdrew £10 at HSBC in Stafford market.

He was called at 11.09am by a staff member from the Department for Employment – who was helping him get a job, and Khan told them he was having a haircut.

Detective Chief Inspector Dan Brown, the senior investigating officer for Scotland Yard’s SO15, said: “Cutting hair and trimming beards is a common act of cleanliness, part of the act of martyrdom for extremists.”

Police believe Khan then bought a pack of four Beauty Line knives for around £15 on Stafford market, although the seller was never found.

At 1.11pm, he was at outdoor store Trespass camping in Gaolgate Street buying a padded jacket in extra large.

Usman Khan killed two people in a terror attack at Fishmongers' Hall near London Bridge in 2019
Image: The inquest into Usman Khan’s death is currently taking place

He had recently bought another jacket in large, but Mr Brown said he believed the larger size was need to hide the fake suicide belt.

By 1.36pm, he visited Sports Direct, buying a pair of Nike Manoa work boots and a Sondico base core top, both of which he wore to the attack.

From there he walked to a Poundstretcher store where he paid for scissors and a mask, along with razors and eyebrow wax strips, paying in cash.

After the attack it was discovered that Khan, in common with other martyrs, had ritually shaved all his body hair to prepare for death.

The scissors were found in the cubicle at the hall, where they had been used to cut the tape that attached the knives to gloves he wore for the attack, and the cycling-style mask was worn during the assault.

There was a second shopping visit to the same Tesco Extra store at 5.14pm that evening when Khan bought another pack of the gaffer tape to wrap the fake explosives on the belt.

Police believe that he already owned the weightlifting belt used in the fake suicide device.

Khan used two of the knives in the attack and left one in his bag in the Fishmongers’ Hall toilet cubicle, where he made his last preparations.

The inquest continues.