Three men held by police over ‘plot to stage Al Qaeda terror strike in UK’

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From the Daily Express

POLICE have arrested three men suspected of plotting an Al Qaeda-inspired terror attack on British soil. Witnesses said one of the men, who are in their 20s and 30s, screamed “cowards” at plain clothes police as he was dragged away from his workplace and arrested. He was confronted by dozens of masked officers at the offices of medical supplies distributors Alliance Healthcare – a subsidary of Boots. 

An eyewitness said: “I was outside and an unmarked van came screeching round the corner quite fast and then the police were dragging him from inside. I heard him shouting his head off calling the police cowards. The man was lashing out as he was being taken away. He was quite a big lad, quite muscular.”

The arrest of the man at their offices in Letchworth, Hertfordshire was accompanied by simultaneous arrests at two separate homes 13 miles away in Luton. 

One of the raids in Luton was led by armed police – and although no firearms were found, it had been feared that police believed the men had access to weapons.

Sources said that police swooped after learning of what was thought to be a “fairly advanced” Islamist conspiracy aimed at an unknown UK target. It is understood that investigators are looking into possible links between the suspects and an Al Qaeda cell in Pakistan, as opposed to the Islamic State. 

Counter terror chiefs are concerned that an attack on a British civilian target by gunmen armed with automatic weapons could be imminent. 

All three of the men were being questioned last night on suspicion of preparing acts of terrorism. 

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