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Ukrainian pleads guilty to murder, mosque attacks

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October 21, 2013 10:47 AM EST | AP


LONDON — LONDON (AP) — A white supremacist Ukrainian student has pleaded guilty to murdering an 82-year-old Muslim man and plotting a terrorist bombing campaign against mosques in central England.

Pavlo Lapshyn admitted murdering Mohammed Saleem, who was stabbed to death as he walked home from a mosque in the city of Birmingham in April.

Lapshyn also pleaded guilty Monday to leaving home-made bombs outside three mosques near Birmingham in June and July. They exploded, but no one was injured.

Police said the 25-year-old, who was in Britain on a work placement, was motivated by racism and a desire to stir up racial tension.

The explosions came amid heightened tensions after the death of Lee Rigby, a British soldier who was killed by alleged Islamic extremists on a London street in May.