Five arrested with link to stabbing

HOMES at Bankstown, Greenacre, Chester Hill and Punchbowl were among 13 raided by 400 police as the Joint Counter Terrorism Team (JCTT) investigate associates of the teenager who allegedly stabbed a bishop during a service at a Wakeley church last month.

Five juveniles were charged following the operation while another two men and three juveniles have been assisting police, with Deputy Commissioner David Hudson saying “the group posed an unacceptable risk and threat to the people of NSW”.
POLICE swarmed streets in Bankstown, Greenacre, Chester Hill and Punchbowl, raiding homes as they searched for associates of the teenager who allegedly stabbed a bishop at a Wakeley church.
After establishing alleged links between the teen and several others, Joint Counter Terrorism Team (JCTT) Sydney investigators executed 13 search warrants across a number of suburbs last Wednesday, concerned that an attack was “likely to ensue”, although they had “no specific locations or targets”.
Five juveniles were arrested, while two men and three other juveniles assisted police with their inquiries.
A number of items were seized, including a significant amount of electronic material.
Two males, aged 17 and 14, were charged with possessing or controlling violent extremist material obtained or accessed using a carriage service.
Two males, both aged 16, were charged with conspiring to engage in any act in preparation for, or planning, a terrorist act.
A male, aged 17, was charged with conspiring to engage in an act in preparation for, or planning, a terrorist act and custody of a knife in a public place.
NSW Police Deputy Commissioner David Hudson said the raids followed “comprehensive surveillance and intensive scrutiny of these individuals” – who have links to each other.
He said that surveillance led investigators to believe that if they were to commit any act, police would not be able to prevent that.
“We believed through the investigation that it was likely an attack might ensue,” he said.
“The risk was too great.”
He assures there is no ongoing threat.
Australian Federal Police Deputy Commissioner Krissy Barrett said they identified links between the teen who allegedly stabbed the bishop and a network of associates and peers who they believe shared a similar violent extremist ideology and the JCCT moved “swiftly to disrupt the individuals”.
“We ask Australians to remain vigilant and if they see or hear anything to contact the National Security hotlines immediately,” she said.
A 16-year-old boy has been charged with a terrorism over the alleged stabbing of the bishop.