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Two men charged with terrorism offences
TWO MEN CHARGED WITH TERRORISM OFFENCES
Tuesday, 01 May 2007
An Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Victoria Police Joint Counter Terrorism Team operation today resulted in two Melbourne men being charged with terrorism-related offences.
A 32-year-old Mount Waverly man and a 36-year-old man from Vermont South have each been charged with three offences relating to being a member of a terrorist organisation and knowingly making funds available to terrorist organisation, namely the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in Sri Lanka.
The arrests follow the execution of eight search warrants in Melbourne and two in Sydney this morning.
AFP National Manager Counter Terrorism Frank Prendergast said the arrests related to the men’s alleged involvement in supporting the LTTE overseas.
“There is no evidence that these two men were planning to carry out a terrorist attack in Australia,” Assistant Commissioner Prendergast said.
“It will be alleged in court that these men are members of an organisation engaging in terrorist activity overseas, and they have been providing active, material support to that group,” he said.
Victoria Police Deputy Commissioner Kieran Walshe said the charges related to allegations the men are members of the LTTE and provided support through funding and materials to LTTE operations overseas.
“It will be alleged in court that these men actively raised funds with the knowledge some of the money would be diverted to the LTTE and used for operational activity in Sri Lanka,” Deputy Commissioner Walshe said.
Both men were charged with intentionally being a member of a terrorist organisation, knowing the organisation is a terrorist organisation, contrary to subsection 102.3(1) of the Criminal Code Act 1995.
They were also charged with providing support to a terrorist organisation, and intentionally receiving funds from or making funds available to a terrorist organisation, knowing the organisation is a terrorist organisation, contrary to sections 102.7 and 102.6(1) of the Criminal Code Act 1995.
The maximum penalty for the membership offence is 10 years imprisonment and 25 years for the other offences.
Both men are expected to appear before Melbourne Magistrates Court today.
Anyone with any information concerning possible terrorist activity is urged to contact the National Security Hotline on 1800 123 400 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
AFP Media (Canberra): (02) 6275 7100