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Man charged with terrorism offences following bomb scare at maternity unit in Leeds
26 January 2023, 19:51
A man, 27, has been charged under the Terrorism Act following a bomb scare at a Leeds hospital.
Mohammad Farooq was charged with engaging in the preparation of an act of terrorism and with explosives and firearms offences following the incident at St James's Hospital in the west Yorkshire city last Friday, Counter Terrorism Policing North East said.
Farooq, of Roundhay, Leeds, has been remanded in custody and will appear before Westminster Magistrates Court via video link tomorrow.
He was initially arrested on suspicion of firearms and explosives offences on the day of the incident on Friday, January 20, but was re-arrested that evening under Section 41 of the Terrorism Act 2000, police said.
Counter-terrorism police were given more time to question Farooq on Sunday.
The Gledhow wing of the hospital was evacuated after the security scare last week.
Army specialists and a bomb disposal unit were called to the scene and a cordon was put in place as a "precautionary measure".
Detective Chief Superintendent James Dunkerley, head of Counter Terrorism Policing North East, said inquiries have confirmed that it was "an isolated incident".
He said: "We are satisfied that there is currently no evidence of an increased risk to the public, within our communities or the UK hospital estate, in connection with this investigation."
"Despite this, the UK threat level remains at 'substantial', and history has shown us we can't afford to be complacent.
"Public vigilance is invaluable in supporting the efforts of Counter Terrorism Policing and its partners to protect our communities from harm.
He added:"We're grateful for the support we've received from the public during this investigation.
"We'd particularly like to thank the staff and patients at St James's Hospital for their patience and cooperation throughout the disruption last Friday."