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Two men in court accused of Christmas terror plot

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    Police and the Bomb Disposal Unit outside a property in Chesterfield, DerbyshireImage copyright PA
    Image caption Police carried out lengthy searches in Chesterfield and Sheffield earlier in December

    Two men have appeared in court accused of preparing to build a bomb in the lead up to Christmas.

    Chip shop owner Andy Sami Star, 31, of Sheffield Road, Chesterfield, and Farhad Salah, 22, of Brunswick Road, Sheffield, are charged with preparing an act of terrorism.

    Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard they are accused of preparing bomb ingredients for an attack on the UK.

    The pair, who appeared by video link from Leeds, were remanded in custody.

    Thomas Halpin, prosecuting, told the hearing the Crown alleged that the pair had been in the early stages of a plot at the time of their arrests.

    A solicitor for Mr Star said there was no evidence that his client was involved in terrorism, telling the court he had been making his own fireworks for New Years’ Eve.

    The pair were among four people arrested on 19 December by detectives from Counter Terrorism Policing North East following an intelligence-led operation.

    A 36-year-old man from Burngreave, Sheffield, remains in police custody for questioning.

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