Lancashire-born Jack Renshaw became interested in politics in his teenage years, first with the English Defence League and later with the British National Party.
He had been studying for a degree in economics and politics at Manchester Metropolitan University, but was asked to leave because of his far-right political activism.
His views became more extreme until he became an out-and-out racist and a Nazi sympathiser.
Asked to describe his political journey, he replied: “I started off basically as a bit of a civic nationalist with, let’s say, slightly covert racist thoughts, and now I’m an outright racist national socialist.”
To get the latest email updates from YorkshireLive click here
Eventually, he settled on National Action, the openly racist and neo-Nazi group founded in 2013.
By 2016 National Action had been banned after it glorified terrorism and celebrated the horrific murder of Yorkshire MP Jo Cox by a white supremacist terrorist.
In 2019 a court heard how Renshaw, 23, from Skelmersdale, had wanted to ‘replicate’ the murder of Jo Cox by killing Labour MP Rosie Cooper.
Renshaw had bought a 19-inch Roman-style gladius short sword in order to kill the West Lancashire MP exact revenge on a female police officer who was investigating him for child sex offences.
He also Googled ‘how long to die after jugular cut’ and researched Mrs Cooper’s schedule as he formed the plot.
The court heard how Renshaw had planned to take hostages at a pub or café before demanding to see Victoria Henderson – the officer who was investigating him – and kill her on arrival.
He then had hoped to be killed by armed police officers in what he described as ‘suicide by cop’.
But his murderous plans were foiled by whistleblower Robbie Mullen who learned of his intentions at a pub in Warrington in July 2017.
In May 2019 Renshaw was handed a life sentence with a minimum term of 20 years after he pleaded guilty to engaging in conduct in preparation for a terrorist act and threats to kill.
Sentencing Renshaw, Mrs Justice McGowan described him as an ‘undoubtedly a dangerous offender’.
He raised his arm in an apparent Nazi salute as he was led to the cells.
After the court case, Detective Superintendent Will Chatterton, head of investigations for counter terrorism policing for the north west, said: “This has been a difficult and complex investigation but evidence gathered against him, proved his intent to carry out these vicious and brutal killings.
“Renshaw has now been branded a terrorist and will forever be remembered as the vile and malicious individual he has admitted to being.
“I cannot even begin to understand the anxiety and upset this has caused his victims, people who were simply carrying out the duties of their jobs but this case is a key example that we cannot do this alone and need the public to help us in our fight against terrorism.
“I’d urge anyone to trust their instincts and report suspicious activity, including any type of extremist behaviour or views to their local police force.
“Thanks to a crucial witness and the dedicated work of counter-terrorism officers, we have been able to see him jailed for life.
“Our work against people like this is not over, however. We will continue to root out those who espouse extreme views and plan to carry out atrocities.
“The actions and views of people like this will not be tolerated and with the help of colleagues at agencies, we will bring these people in front of the court of law to be prosecuted.”
Renshaw was previously jailed in 2018 for 16 months after he groomed two underage boys online.
He also received a three-year prison sentence two months earlier when he was found guilty of stirring up racial hatred after he called for the genocide of Jewish people.
Renshaw is understood to the serving his sentence in Wakefield’s maximum-security prison – dubbed ‘Monster Mansion’ – alongside prisoners Ian Watkins, the rock star paedophile, and the child molester and murderer Mark Bridger.