London Police Arrest 6 on Suspicion of Terrorism

July 5, 2012
London Police Arrest 6 on Suspicion of Terrorism
London Police Arrest 6 on Suspicion of Terrorism (ABC News)

Authorities in London arrested six possible terrorists -- subduing one with a stun-gun -- as part of a months-long international terror probe.

The investigation that prompted today's arrests by armed police has so far revealed no known connection to the Olympic Games set to begin later this month, although several arrests occurred near the main Olympic venue in London, according to a police statement and intelligence sources.

Separately, as the searches occurred today, police near Birmingham stopped a budget intercity bus after a passenger spotted a man pouring something into his bag, and then saw smoke coming out.

In that incident, on the M6 Motorway, armed police escorted passengers off the bus in what was described as a "counter-terror response."

As armed police officers and bomb-sniffing dogs continued their investigation, passengers remained seated on the motorway, which was closed in both directions. At least eight fire trucks were on scene supporting the police operation. The fire department appeared to have erected inflatable "Hazmat" tents.

"We can confirm that no one has been injured and that there is no danger to passengers at the scene or any other travelers who were on the motorway at that time," Staffordshire Police said in a statement. "We are also not treating anyone as a suspect … Importantly, we are not treating this as a counter terrorism incident."

The incident was unconnected to the arrests, authorities stated.

In the terror probe investigation, five men and one woman, ages 21 to 29, were arrested in several locations across London by officers from Scotland Yard's Counter Terrorism Command.

The arrests were the "executive action" phase of a long-running investigation led by British intelligence service MI-5.

The men and woman were all arrested on suspicion of the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism under the Terrorism Act 2000, police said.

The suspects were taken to a southeast London police station where they are in custody.

Authorities would not disclose further details of the case that might compromise their strategy for interviewing the suspects.

What they seized in the searches is unknown.

Police said the arrests in London are related to a possible plot involving Islamist extremists and potential targets in the United Kingdom.

The incident and arrests occurred days after two people were picked up on suspicion of plotting an attack on the London Olympic canoeing venue.

The U.K.'s Ministry of Defense has confirmed that they are providing assistance to police at the incident in the M6.

ABC News' Jeffrey Kofman contributed to this report.