Teens charged with plotting attack on Aussie school

SYDNEY • Two teenagers have been charged with planning an attack at a school in Australia using guns and explosives in an act that police alleged yesterday was designed to harm a "large number of people".

The plot targeting the school in South Australia's Riverland region came to the attention of the authorities earlier this month, with the two young men arrested soon after.

Detective Superintendent Des Bray said they were accused of planning "an attack at a school involving the use of firearms and explosives which could have led to multiple deaths".

"Two teenage boys - aged 16 and 18 - are in custody. The younger has been charged with a count of solicit to murder, while the older teenager has been charged with aggravated counts of threatening to kill," he said.

"There is no evidence to show that any other person was linked with this matter, nor did the two individuals have possession of firearms," he added.

The alleged plot was foiled a day after police in Melbourne arrested a 20-year-old man who they claimed was planning to buy a gun and kill as many revellers as possible on New Year's Eve in the city.

Police said the man, Ali Ali, was a sympathiser of terror group Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, but there was no mention of any extremist group link to the teenagers in South Australia.

Mr Bray said the pair were allegedly involved in planning the attack between June 1 and Nov 7 this year.

The main towns of the fruit-producing Riverland region north-east of Adelaide include Renmark, Berri and Loxton.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 30, 2017, with the headline 'Teens charged with plotting attack on Aussie school'. Print Edition | Subscribe