13-year-old boy arrested for terrorism in London

A 13-year-old boy has been charged with terrorism offenses after sharing Islamist material.

The young boy was arrested at an address in west London on Tuesday May 17 on suspicion of disseminating terrorist material and has been taken into custody, Met Police said. He was released on bail until a date in mid-June.

The investigation focuses on the alleged sharing of extreme Islamist material online.

Officers obtained a warrant and searched his address, the force confirmed.

The boy is among the youngest suspected extremists to be charged with terrorism in the UK.

In 2021, a far-right teenager who committed his first terrorism offense at the age of 13 was sentenced to a 24-month juvenile rehabilitation order.

Commander Richard Smith, head of the Met’s Counter Terrorism Command, said: “Although it is still very rare for such a young person to be arrested for a terrorist offence, we have recently seen a worrying increase in the number of teenagers lured into terrorism.

“That particular investigation is still ongoing, but more broadly, we are working closely with a range of partners to try to protect and steer vulnerable young people away from extremism and terrorism.

“The public has an important role to play in this, and we urge anyone who thinks a friend or relative is becoming radicalized or being drawn into a path to terrorism to ‘ACT Early’. Please contact us so we can get that person the help they need.

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