Boy aged just 13 arrested in west London for terror offence over allegedly sharing ‘Islamist’ content

The investigation relates to the alleged sharing of extreme Islamist material online, the force has said.

A 13-year-old boy has been arrested after allegedly sharing extreme Islamist content online, the Met Police have said.

Counter-terrorism squad officers detained the boy at an address in west London, yesterday (Tuesday, May 17).

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The investigation relates to the alleged sharing of extreme Islamist material online, the force has said, and the offence was contrary to section two of the Terrorism Act 2006.

Commander Richard Smith, head of the Met’s counter-terror unit, said: “While it is still very rare for such a young person to be arrested for a terrorism offence, in recent times we have seen a worrying increase in the number of teenagers being drawn into terrorism.”

The boy was taken into custody and has been bailed to a date in mid-June.

Officers detained the boy under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (PACE) and obtained a warrant to search the property, which has been carried.

Police will work closely with safeguarding agencies as the investigation continues.

Commander Smith added: "This particular investigation remains ongoing, but more broadly, we work closely with a whole range of partners to try and protect and divert young, vulnerable people away from extremism and terrorism.

"The public have an important part to play in this, and we would urge anyone who thinks a friend or relative is becoming radicalised or drawn into a path towards terrorism to act early.

“Please contact us so that we might be able to get that person the help they need.”

Visit www.actearly.uk for support for anyone who you suspect may be being radicalised. Extreme online content can be reported anonymously via https://www.gov.uk/report-terrorism or via the iREPORTit app.

Police have urged anyone who sees or hears something suspicious, or thinks someone may be engaging in terrorist activity, to trust their instincts and act by reporting it in confidence at gov.uk/ACT or the anti-terrorist hotline on 0800 789 321. In an emergency, dial 999.