A teenager who had plotted to carry out an Islamic State inspired attack in Cardiff has been given a life sentence.

Lloyd Gunton, 17, had planned to target the city's main shopping centre, a local library and theatre in the foiled plot intended to emulate the Westminster bridge attack.

Using Google Maps he also carried out "virtual surveillance" of a Justin Bieber concert at Principality Stadium, recalling the horror of the attack on an Ariana grande concert in Manchester that left dead.

He had planned to carry out the deadly attack on June 30 last year, but police arrested him just hours before he was due to set off on his murderous mission.

Gunton, who turns 18 in April and suffers from an autism spectrum disorder, was arrested at his home in the Llantrisant area of south Wales where it was found he had downloaded instructions on how to carry out 'lone wolf' attacks

A "terrorist's kit" comprising a rucksack with a knife, a hammer and suicide note, was found in his room.

In the martyrdom letter, he described himself as a "soldier of ISIS" and outlined his plot to kill "non-believers" in Cardiff.

Appearing at Birmingham Crown Court last year, he was convicted of preparing terrorist acts and propagating extremist material.


Giving him a life sentence, of which he would serve at least 11 years, Judge Mark Wall QC told the court that Gunton had been "within hours of committing an act of atrocity on the streets of Cardiff".

"It is not possible to estimate how many people would have been murdered or seriously injured by your actions, as the attack was foiled before you could undertake it.

"I am sure that you planned not just the killing of one person but rather mass murder.

"In my judgement, I must pass an indeterminate sentence. Your actions show a total disregard for human life.

"I cannot foresee a time when I can be confident that your danger will have ended or decreased sufficiently to enable me to pass a determinate or extended sentence."

Gunton was also convicted of two counts of encouraging terrorism by posting extremist material on Instagram, and two charges of possessing Islamic State propaganda magazines.