Australian teen charged with plotting alleged terror attack
25 April 2016, 15:34
Sydney – A teenager was charged with plotting a terrorist attack
on an Australian Veteran's Day ceremony, police said on Monday, the second year
in a row authorities say they have thwarted an attack linked to the national
The 16-year-old boy was charged with one count of planning a
terrorist act after being arrested at his home in western Sydney on Sunday, one
day before Australians across the country gathered at ceremonies to mark ANZAC
Day. The annual holiday commemorates the April 25, 1915, Gallipoli landings in
Turkey – the first major military action fought by the Australian and New
Zealand Army Corps during World War I.
Police believe the teen was acting alone, and he had previously
been on authorities' radar, New South Wales Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione
said. The teen's home was searched, but Scipione declined to say if anything
was seized. He would not release any other details of the alleged plot.
The teen was expected to face a children's court later on Monday. He
could face a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted.
This is the second year in a row that police say they have stopped
an attack on an ANZAC Day ceremony. Last year, police in Melbourne arrested
five teenagers on suspicion of plotting an Islamic State group-inspired attack
intended to coincide with the city's ANZAC service.
The age of the Sydney suspect was troubling but unsurprising,
Justice Minister Michael Keenan said.
"Unfortunately, this is part of a pattern that we have been
observing, where younger and younger people are targeted and incited to go and
commit an act of terror," Keenan told reporters in Perth.
Australia's government raised the country's terror threat level in
2014 in response to the domestic threat posed by supporters of the Islamic
State group. Police have since conducted dozens of raids they say have been
aimed at thwarting multiple plots in Australia, including an alleged plan to
attack government buildings and a naval base in Sydney.