‘ISIS-inspired Christmas bomb plot’ is foiled in Newcastle as man, 33, is arrested and homes put on lockdown

  • A 33-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of terrorism offences in Newcastle
  • A large area of Arthur’s Hill was taped off and 100 officers scrambled to scene 
  • Residents evacuated from their homes as raid was carried out by armed officers 

By Rebecca Camber and Eleanor Hayward For The Daily Mail, December 12, 2018:

Police have foiled a suspected bomb plot inspired by Islamic State in the run up to Christmas, it emerged yesterday.

More than a hundred officers swooped on a quiet cul-de-sac in Newcastle upon Tyne yesterday to arrest an alleged lone wolf plotter said to be under the spell of the terror group.

Fearing that explosives may be present, more than 150 houses were evacuated as well as a school when elite counter-terrorism officers raided an address in the Arthur’s Hill area of the city less than a mile from St James’s Park football stadium and the Eldon Square shopping centre.

Dozens of locals were taken to a community centre while searches were carried out at the suspect’s property for any explosives or weapons.

A 33-year-old man was arrested at the property on suspicion of being concerned in the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism.

More than a hundred officers swooped on a quiet cul-de-sac in Newcastle upon Tyne yesterday to arrest an alleged lone wolf plotter said to be under the spell of the terror group

It is understood residents were evacuated from their homes in what the police have described as part of an ‘intelligence led and pre-planned’ investigation

But hours after his arrest the cordon was taken down after no explosives were found.

Last night the suspect was last night being questioned at a police station on West Yorkshire.

It is understood police decided to move in amid fears that a lone wolf bomb attack was being plotted in the run up to Christmas.

Specialist forensic officers were last night continuing to carry out a fingertip search of the property.

A police spokesman said the operation had been the result of a pre-planned, intelligence led investigation and warned locals that armed officers were likely to remain at the scene for some time.

Locals expressed their shock at seeing police officers in military style uniforms descending on the normally quiet street shortly after 10am.

Neighbours described the man who was living at the address as an Asian man in his 30s, but said they knew little about him.

Among those whose homes were evacuated in the residential area was the father of troubled TV presenter Ant McPartlin.

One of the cordoned off roads was once home to teenage bomb plotter Liam Lyburd who was jailed for life in 2015 for an unrelated plot to carry out a massacre at Newcastle College.

Chief Superintendent Neil Hutchinson said: ‘Officers from Counter Terrorism Policing North East, supported by Northumbria Police have this morning (TUES) arrested a man in the Arthur’s Hill area of Newcastle on suspicion of terrorism offences