Man charged with terrorism offences in Sydney
Published: 03 January 2018
A man who allegedly threatened to kill police while armed with a knife in Sydney last year, is now facing terrorism related charges over the incident.Blake Nicholas Pender allegedly approached uniformed police officers from behind at the intersection of Devonshire and Elizabeth streets in Surry Hills, in June last year.
Police allege he was muttering in a foreign language and made threats about wanting to become a martyr and kill police.
The 26-year-old was subsequently charged with being armed with intent to assault police and steal from persons and remains before the courts.
At a press conference today Assistant Commissioner of the Counter Terrorism and Special Tactics Command Mick Willing said following further investigations the man has now been charged with terrorism offences.
“The incident occurred and further investigations were conducted by the Fixated Persons Investigation Unit,” Assistant Commissioner Willing said.
“We gathered further information and evidence which we allege goes towards the intent shown by the individual on that day and that information has formed the basis of these charges.
“These are serious charges and this is the first time the Fixated Persons Investigation Unit has laid terrorism charges.”
Mr Pender was today charged with a further two offences related to possession of an item in connection with a terrorist act and acting in preparation for or for the planning of a terrorist act. He remains in custody.
Assistant Commissioner Willing reiterated the importance of stopping those who seek to cause harm to the community.
“We have to do what we can to stop the threat and keep people safe.”
“Our primary focus is always keeping the public safe.
“This is not a new threat at all and we encourage people to go about their days, be vigilant, be alert, and be safe.
“NSW Police are doing everything we can to stop the next attack from happening and this unit adds another layer of protection for the community and in many cases, protects individuals from themselves.”
Mr Pender will appear at Central Local Court on February 8.