Police charge three after NSW JCTT operation

Charges have been laid against three men were, who were arrested yesterday as part of a NSW Joint Counter Terrorism Team (JCTT) investigation targeting a group of people alleged to support the Islamic State terrorist organisation.

The NSW JCTT comprises representatives from the Australian Federal Police (AFP), NSW Police Force, Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) and the NSW Crime Commission.

Police executed a total of six search warrants at properties at Greenacre, Toongabbie, Chester Hill, Ingleburn, Green Valley and Canada Bay, from 6am yesterday (Tuesday 2 July 2019).

Three men – aged 20, 23, and 30 – were arrested during the operation and taken to local police stations.

The 20-year-old Greenacre man was charged with acts in preparation for a terrorist act, contrary to section 101.6 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth) and engage in preparations for incursions into foreign countries for the purpose of engaging in hostile activities, contrary to section 119.4(1) of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth). The maximum penalty for these offences is life imprisonment.

It will be alleged in court that the man had made early-stage preparations and had expressed an intention to carry out a terrorist attack in Australia. The man allegedly indicated a range of targets, which included prominent Sydney landmarks and locations, but had not selected a specific target or time to do so.

NSW JCTT investigators and partner agencies worked diligently during this investigation to ensure the safety of the community and did not identify any specific and impending threat. It will further be alleged that the man had indicated a willingness to travel to Afghanistan to fight with Islamic State.

The Greenacre man was also charged with being a member of a terrorist organisation, namely Islamic State, contrary to section 102.3 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth). The maximum penalty for this offence is 10 years imprisonment.

He was refused bail to appear at Parramatta Local Court tomorrow (Thursday 4 July 2019).

The 23-year-old Toongabbie man was charged with being a member of a terrorist organisation, namely Islamic State, contrary to section 102.3 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth). The maximum penalty for this offence is 10 years imprisonment.

It will be alleged in court that the man identified as a member of Islamic State to other likeminded people and was prominent in the global online extremist community.

He was refused bail and appeared at Bankstown Local Court today (Wednesday 3 July 2019).

The 30-year-old Chester Hill man – an associate of the other two men – was charged obtaining a financial benefit by deception, namely fraudulently claiming Commonwealth unemployment benefits, contrary to section 134.2 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth). The maximum penalty for this offence is 10 years imprisonment.

He was granted strict conditional bail and is due to appear at Burwood Local Court on Thursday 25 July 2019.

Anyone with information about extremist activity or possible threats to the community should come forward, no matter how small or insignificant you may think the information may be.

The National Security Hotline is 1800 123 400.

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