British armed forces member arrested in Somerset on suspicion of Northern Ireland-related terrorism

Hands in handcuffs, close-up

By Tim_MacFarlan

A terror suspect is being held at a West Country police station

A 30-year-old serving member of the British armed forces has been arrested in Somerset on suspicion of Northern Ireland-related terrorism offences.

The man – reported to be a Royal Marine – was detained at 12.20pm today.

Officers have also been searching a cordoned-off wooded area in neighbouring South Devon as well as the address where the arrest took place.

Scotland Yard said the suspect was held as part of an intelligence-led investigation into Northern Ireland-related terror.

He is being questioned at a West Country police station on suspicion of being involved in the preparation for acts of terrorism under Section 5 of the Terrorism Act.

He was arrested by officers from the Metropolitan Police’s Counter Terrorism Unit, supported by Avon and Somerset and Devon and Cornwall Police forces.

The pre-planned sting follows an investigation involving the Police Service of Northern Ireland and the South West Counter Terrorism Intelligence Unit.

Police said there was no intelligence to suggest an immediate threat to the public.

The Ministry of Defence said: “We are aware of a police investigation involving the arrest of a member of the Armed Forces under the 2000 Terrorism Act and will assist this investigation fully.

“It would be inappropriate to comment further on an ongoing investigation.”

The threat to Great Britain from Northern Ireland-related terrorism is currently ranked as ‘substantial’.

The threat to Northern Ireland from home grown terrorism is ‘severe’.



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