24 Dec 2014

Two arrests after Sydney terror raids

5:36 pm on 24 December 2014

Federal and state government "entities" in Sydney have allegedly been named as potential terror targets in documents seized during an AFP investigation which saw two men arrested.

Catherine Burn

NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn (left) and Australian Federal Police Deputy Commissioner Michael Phelan (right) Photo: AAP

Australian Federal Police said members of the Joint Counter Terrorism Team made the arrests late on Tuesday with New South Wales Police as part of Operation Appleby. the ABC reported.

Sulayman Khalid, 20, from Regent's Park was charged with possession of documents designed to facilitate a terrorist attack, while a 21-year-old man from Marsfield was charged with breaching a control order.

If found guilty, Khalid could face a maximum 15 years in jail.

Security was stepped up outside Parramatta Local Court ahead of court appearances today for both men.

Khalid did not apply for bail, and it was formally refused when he appeared in court via video link.

The arrests come just over a week after the Sydney cafe siege, when two people were killled.

Federal police claimed they seized documents from his home during raids last week that detailed potential government terror targets.

The 21-year-old Marsfield man, who can not be named for legal reasons, was refused bail.

Both men will face court again in February.

Documents 'name potential targets in Sydney'

AFP Deputy Commissioner National Security Michael Phelan said police allege the documents named potential targets in Sydney.

"Certainly the documents talked a little bit about potential government targets and so on," he said.

"[There were] no threats at all against the Prime Minister but some of the potential targets written in the documentation were around Federal and State Government entities.

But the Commissioner said there was no evidence that a terror attack was imminent.

"There is nothing that indicates any specific targets or time frame in relation to this particular activity at all," he said.

"We just want to reassure the community that as soon as any information or activity comes before us we will take swift action."

Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn said their investigation was not over.

"We are very, very confident in what we have been able to achieve in making sure we disrupt any activity, any threat to the safety of any person in New South Wales and this country," she said.

"This is all about disruption. We are now faced with a new environment."

Commissioner Burn said there would be more police in public places over the holiday season.

"We have placed 11 people [since September] before the court, some of these are for serious terrorism offences," she said.

"As we move into Christmas and the new year that investigation will continue.

"There will be a heightened police presence in public places."

She said there would a large police presence on New Year's Eve to ensure safety.

"The reason for our success is because people give us information," she said.

"It's really important when people go about their daily activities if they see anything suspicious [they let us know]."

"Anything at all, we can put together, fill a jigsaw puzzle and it may help."

Operation Appleby is a joint operation involving NSW Police, AFP and ASIO.

The investigation is focused on the alleged planning of a terrorist attack on Australian soil and helping Australians travel to Syria to fight.

In September, 15 people were detained when up to 800 officers carried out counter-terrorism raids across suburbs in Sydney's west.

Properties were also raided in Brisbane, involving a further 70 police officers.

At the time, police said the Sydney raids foiled a plot to "commit violent acts" in Australia, including a plan to behead a member of the public.

The arrests also came after Australia's prime minister, Tony Abbott, said there had been heightened "terror chatter" since the cafe siege.

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