Iketina Chigbo, who lives in the block of flats raided in Barking, said he saw the Arsenal-supporting jihadi just a few hours before the terror attack.
He said: ‘It was around 3pm and I was in the process of moving so was loading stuff into a van. He came over and seemed quite excitable. He was wearing his Arsenal shirt and was asking about the van.
‘He was asking where I got the van from and how much it cost. He said he was planning to move too and that’s why he wanted to know – I didn’t think anything of it.
‘He was on another level of happiness and kept shaking my hand. He seemed almost euphoric.
‘But then I saw the picture from the scene of the attack of the guy on the floor – he was wearing the same kind of colour top and I just couldn’t believe it. I knew it was him, I recognised him.’
British police said on Sunday they would release the names of the three men who killed seven people in London “as soon as operationally possible”, adding that searches were continuing in four properties.
The men rammed a van into pedestrians and stabbed revelers on Saturday night before being shot by police. Twelve people were arrested in east London on Sunday in connection with the attack.
Police said that one man had been released without charge, but four men and seven women were still being detained under terrorism legislation.
“The public can expect to see additional police – both armed and unarmed officers – across the capital as you would expect in these circumstances,” Mark Rowley, Britain’s top counter-terrorism policeman, said in a statement.
One of the three jihadists who murdered revellers in central London on Saturday had been reported to the anti-terror police on at least two occasions, it has been claimed.
A former friend of the terrorist, who was shot dead by police along with two accomplices, claimed he had been radicalised while watching YouTube videos and said he contacted the authorities after becoming concerned over his friend’s extremist views.
A neighbour also claimed she had contacted police in Barking, east London, after the suspect tried to convert her children to Islam and radicalise them. The man is not being named at the request of the police.
The former friend claimed he contacted police after comments the man made about other previous attacks. But he said the authorities had failed to act and take action despite evidence of increasingly extremist views.
U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday urged the world to stop being “politically correct” in order to ensure security, after three attackers drove a van into pedestrians and stabbed revelers in London, killing seven.
At least 48 people were injured in the attack, the third to hit Britain in less than three months and occurring days ahead of a snap parliamentary election on Thursday.
“We must stop being politically correct and get down to the business of security for our people,” Trump wrote on Sunday morning. “If we don’t get smart it will only get worse.”
He continued: “At least 7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says there is ‘no reason to be alarmed!'”
British Prime Minister Theresa May called for international regulation of the Internet to combat terrorism at a news conference Sunday.
“We cannot allow this ideology the safe space it needs to breed,” May said.
“Yet that is precisely what the Internet and the big companies that provide Internet-based services provide,” May continued. “We need to work with allied democratic governments to reach international agreements that regulate cyberspace to prevent the spread of extremist and terrorism planning.”