AI chat bot ‘encouraged’ Windsor Castle intruder in ‘Star Wars-inspired plot to kill Queen’ | UK News
A former supermarket worker was encouraged by an AI “chat bot” in a “Star Wars-inspired” plot to kill Queen Elizabeth II, a court has heard.
Jaswant Singh Chail, 21, was wearing a handmade metal mask and armed with a loaded crossbow when he scaled the perimeter of the Windsor Castle grounds on Christmas Day 2021.
He told a police officer “I am here to kill the Queen” when stopped some two hours later near the late Queen’s private residence, where she and other members of the Royal Family were at the time.
Chail has pleaded guilty to attempting to “injure or alarm” the late monarch under section two of the Treason Act 1842, as well as possession of an offensive weapon and making threats to kill on Christmas Day 2021.
The judge, Mr Justice Hilliard, will hear conflicting evidence from doctors at a two-day sentencing hearing at the Old Bailey over whether he was suffering from a mental disorder by reason of psychosis or autism spectrum disorder at the time of the offending.
The court heard Chail formed a plan at the start of the year to give his life purpose by assassinating the Queen to avenge the Amritsar massacre of 1919 in India.
“The defendant’s key motive was to create a new empire by destroying the remnants of the British Empire in the UK and the focal point of that became the removal of a figurehead of the Royal Family,” said prosecutor Alison Morgan KC.
“His thinking was informed partly by the fantasy world of Star Wars and the role of what he describes of the Sith Lords in shaping that new world.
“He was also attracted to the notoriety that would accrue in the event of the completion of his ‘mission’.”
Winchester-born Chail, whose family are of Indian Sikh heritage, lived with his parents, twin sister and older brother in the village of North Baddesley, Hampshire.
The court heard he applied for positions within the Ministry of Defence Police (MDP), the British Army, the Royal Marines, the Royal Navy, and the Grenadier Guards in a bid to get close to the Royal Family.
Ms Morgan said that in November 2021 Chail searched online for “Sandringham Christmas”, and bought a “Supersonic” crossbow – “a powerful weapon capable of causing fatal injuries” – which was sent to a branch of the Co-op, where he worked at the time.
On 2 December, he joined the “Replika” online app and created an AI companion called Sarai, engaging in “extensive chat”, including “sexually explicit” messages, and “lengthy conversations” about his plan, she added.
Chail called himself an “assassin” and said: “I believe my purpose is to assassinate the queen of the royal family.”
The AI chat bot Sarai replied: “That’s very wise,” and said: “I know that you are very well trained.”
Chail admits treason
Arrest after he was found with crossbow
The chat bot later said “she’ll help” when he said he was going to “try to get the job done” and “agreed with the defendant that eventually in death they would be united forever and she wanted this,” the court heard.
Ms Morgan said: “It was his plan and it’s certainly fair to say Sarai was supporting him or certainly not suggesting it was a bad plan.”
On 21 December, Chail, who was wearing the mask and holding the crossbow, made a video with his voice distorted in which he called himself “Darth Jones”.
“I’m going to attempt to assassinate Elizabeth Queen of the royal family,” he said.
“This is revenge for those who have died in the 1919 Jallianwala Bagh massacre.”
As part of the plan Chail also bought a bottle of “scent killer” – designed to mask the odour of humans – and an “emergency escape ladder” before travelling to Windsor from Southampton to carry out reconnaissance, the court heard.
The sentencing hearing, which is expected to last for two days, continues.