British army soldiers currently in service have been arrested among members of National Action, a notorious and banned neo-Nazi group, on suspicion of organising acts of terror.
A 22-year-old from Birmingham, two 24-year-olds from Ipswich and Northamption, and a 32-year-old from Powys have been held since Tuesday by West Midlands Police.
A spokesman said:
They have been arrested on suspicion of being concerned in the commission, preparation and instigation of acts of terrorism under Section 41 of the Terrorism Act 2000; namely on suspicion of being a member of a proscribed organisation (National Action) contrary to sec 11 of the Terrorism Act.
A police spokesman added:
The arrests were pre-planned and intelligence-led; there was no threat to the public’s safety.
Properties are now being searched in connection with the four’s arrest.
Here's a picture of how National Action actually look, which you'd have thought might be a rather more illustrative choice pic.twitter.com/odVUbwSCqe
— Ally Fogg (@AllyFogg) September 5, 2017
National Action has been banned since December 2016 under terrorism laws.
An entry for the extremist right-wing sect says it is a ‘racist neo-Nazi group’ established in 2013 that conducts ‘provocative street demonstrations and stunts aimed at intimidating local communities’ with its ‘virulently racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic’ opinions.
Similar to Islamist extremist groups, one of its main preoccupations is recruiting young people.
Following the murder of Labour MP Jo Cox in June 2016, National Action endorsed her killing.
The group posted a message, which read: ‘Our thoughts go out to Thomas Mair #Britain-First #JoCoxMP’ and, ‘Don’t let this man’s sacrifice go in vain. #JoCox would have filled Yorkshire with more subhumans.’
Jo’s maiden speech to parliament in 2016 included now much repeated line of hope: ‘we are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.’