A man who attacked a Sikh trainee dentist with a machete in a racist assault intended as revenge for the slaying of a British soldier by Muslim extremists was convicted Thursday of attempted murder.
Zack Davies struck Sarandev Bhambra in the head with a foot-long (30-centimeter) blade in a supermarket in Mold, Wales, in January. Witnesses said they heard Davies shout "white power" and "this is for Lee Rigby."
Rigby was run down with a car and stabbed to death in a London street in May 2013 by two men inspired by Islamic extremism.
A former soldier, Peter Fuller, managed to get between Davies and his victim and stop the attack. Bhambra, 24, suffered what prosecutors called "life-changing" injuries.
Prosecutors said white supremacist material was found at Davies' home. Davies told police he belonged to the neo-Nazi group National Action, and told court he was fascinated and inspired by the masked militant known as Jihadi John, seen in Islamic State group murder videos.
A jury at Mold Crown Court found 26-year-old Davies guilty. He will be sentenced in September after undergoing psychiatric assessment. Gareth Preston of the Crown Prosecution Service Wales said Davies was "a dangerous young man whose distorted and racist views led him to commit a terrifying act of violence."
Outside court, Bhambra's family criticized police and prosecutors for not classing the attack as terrorism. "Sarandev was singled out because of the color of his skin," they said in a statement. "This should have been rightly defined as an act of terrorism."