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Canonbury dawn raid could be related to counter terrorism op

PUBLISHED: 15:46 06 May 2015 | UPDATED: 15:46 06 May 2015

Thorndike Road, where a witness said police raided a home earlier today

Thorndike Road, where a witness said police raided a home earlier today

Archant

A dawn raid on a Canonbury home today is thought to be part of an investigation linked to extremists travelling to Syria.

A dawn raid on a Canonbury home today is thought to be part of an investigation linked to extremists travelling to Syria.

Eight police vehicles including “riot vans” were seen outside a property in Thorndike Road at 6am this morning as police stormed the address – according to one neighbour’s account.

The reports coincided with an operation by the Met’s counter terrorism command in which a 32-year-old woman and five men, all in their 20s, were arrested across six addresses in north London on suspicion of conspiracy to commit fraud and money laundering. It is not known whether any of the men at the Thorndike Road address were arrested.

Police say the raids, which also saw a 38-year-old man arrested in Luton for money laundering, were part of an ongoing investigation into a scam which targets the elderly and is linked to UK extremists travelling to Syria.

Describing the raid in Thorndike Road, a neighbour said: “There must have been about eight police cars.

“They woke me and my daughter up at 6am, she was really frightened.

“I don’t think they were armed but they all had bullet proof vests on.”

Police said the counter terrorism operation included hitting those suspected of involvement in a scheme where vulnerable and elderly victims are “cold called” on their home phone by a suspect impersonating a police officer.

A Met spokesman said: “If anyone receives a call like this about your bank account from someone claiming to be a police officer, hang up the phone, wait at least five minutes to make sure the phone line has cleared, or use another phone line, before ringing the phone number on your bank card.”

The suspects were taken to a south London police station.

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