Manchester attack: Man arrested in West Sussex as terror network investigation widens

Police take 23-year-old male from Shoreham-by-Sea into custody in early hours of Monday morning as connections with bomber Salman Abedi continue to be explored

Monday 29 May 2017 06:35
Until now the investigation has focused its attentions on Manchester
Until now the investigation has focused its attentions on Manchester

The Manchester bombing inquiry has spread to the south coast of England with the arrest of a man in West Sussex.

The 23-year-old was held on suspicion of terror offences at an address in Shoreham-by-Sea in the early hours of Monday morning, Greater Manchester Police (GMP) said.

As counter-terror officers swooped in the desirable seaside town, searches were also launched 260 miles away at properties in Manchester and Cheshire.

With the massive operation to dismantle suicide bomber Salman Abedi's network showing little sign of slowing:

  • Fourteen men were being held in custody in connection with the Manchester Arena attack.
  • Police remained at an address in Shoreham-on-Sea, one of the country's most expensive seaside towns.
  • Officers from Cheshire Police and Counter Terrorism Policing North West searched an address in Chester in connection with the attack.
  • GMP said they had also executed a search warrant in the Whalley Range area of south Manchester

The Bank Holiday raids followed a flurry of police activity in Manchester over the weekend, with the arrest of a 25-year-old man in Old Trafford and a 19-year-old man in Gorton in connection with attack.

Police have been working round-the-clock since Abedi killed 22 people, seven of them children, and injured more than 100 in the worst terrorist atrocity since the July 7 bombings in 2005.

The race to round up a suspected network connected to the terrorist has seen a total of 16 arrests made in connection with the attack, although two people have since been released.

It has been reported that MI5 has launched two urgent inquiries into whether it missed the danger posed by Abedi, 22, amid allegations it was warned of his deadly aspirations.

The domestic security service is said to be investigating whether any glaring errors were made in the handling of intelligence concerning Abedi before he launched the attack last Monday night.

Spy chiefs are believed to have held an emergency review in the days after the atrocity, while a separate in-depth inquiry is being conducted to look at the decision making surrounding his case before the massacre, the Guardian reports.

A senior Whitehall source previously revealed the mass murderer was a “former subject of interest” to the security services whose risk “remained subject to review”.

On Sunday Home Secretary Amber Rudd said she would “not rush to conclusions” that agents “somehow missed something”.

In the wake of the Manchester attack it emerged that British counter-terror authorities were grappling with 500 investigations into 3,000 individuals.

Security sources later confirmed to the Press Association that a further 20,000 individuals were said to have been considered “subjects of interest” in the past,

It means as many as 23,000 people have appeared on the radar of counter-terror agencies, although the period the figures cover is unclear.

Copyright Press Association

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