A New South Wales man who has been jailed for at least 12 years for planning a terrorist attack has been warned he may still be detained after his sentence is served.
The 20-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was carried into the NSW supreme court by three corrective services officers before he was sentenced by justice Geoffrey Bellew on Wednesday.
The man, who had previously shown “bizarre behaviour” before the court including refusing to answer questions when cross-examined and lying under a table, continued to do so during his sentencing.
After yelling that he “did not want to be here” he mumbled and prayed throughout the proceedings before yelling at the end that it was “Islamophobic”.
In custody, he went on a hunger strike and refused to comply with the rules of the youth justice centre where he was being held, with more than 100 misbehaviour reports against him including assaulting staff.
Bellew said the offending by the man, who was 16 at the time, was “not spontaneous, it was planned”.
He was satisfied that the man and his associate were planning to perform a terrorist attack on innocent members of the public imminently before they were arrested.
In 2015, he visited Egypt with his family, where he travelled alone to the town of El-Arish, which at the time had been subject to terrorist attacks.
The mobile phone he used was later searched and found with a large amount of “alarming” extremist material.
He was arrested at a Muslim prayer hall in Bankstown in October 2016 along with his schoolfriend who has already been jailed for at least 12 years.
Prior to their arrest, the duo met at the Revesby pool where they sat on a park bench behind the grandstand and talked for about 20 minutes. Bellew believes the two were discussing plans to be executed at the public space later that day.
The pair then “acted in concert” when they purchased two MTech knives from a Bankstown gun store and another set of M9 Bayonet knives, according to the facts of the case.
Bellew described such violent ideology as “fundamentally contrary to the peaceful, ordered and democratic way of life that the citizens of this country have rightly grown to cherish and protect”.
He said his prospects for rehabilitation were poor as he had shown no signs of renouncing his extremist views, or any remorse for his actions.
The man’s father had asked to represent his son during his retrial after he sacked his lawyer, but he refused and represented himself, and chose not to participate in much of the trial, Bellew said.
He was found guilty in April of doing an act or acts between 6 and 12 October in 2016 in preparation for a terrorist act.
He was given a maximum term of 16 years and will be first eligible for parole on 11 October 2028. He was warned that an application may be made for a continuing detention order keeping him in prison after the end of his sentence.
After he was sentenced he was dragged to his feet and his father yelled out to him in court that he had already filed an appeal.
Outside court his father said the conviction was unfair, racist and that he did not believe his son was a terrorist.