Australian Man Arrested on Terror-Related Charges in Sydney

PERTH (Reuters) -

An 18-year old Australian man has been arrested and charged with collecting documents about how to carry out terrorist acts, police in Sydney said on Tuesday.

Sameh Bayda was arrested on Monday evening, and he appeared in criminal court in western Sydney via video link on Tuesday, the Australian Broadcasting Corp. (ABC) reported.

Police found him in possession of material that provided instructions both for perpetrating stabbing attacks and the use of improvised explosive devices, ABC said, citing documents tabled in court.

One of the documents was allegedly published by al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, the ABC reported.

Police seized a number of items from Bayda’s home on Jan. 13 when he was served with a Firearm Prohibition Order, they said in a statement. Under new laws introduced in New South Wales in late 2013, police can search any person, vehicle or home with this order without seeking a warrant.

Bayda appeared, didn’t apply for bail, and was formally refused it by the court. He is scheduled to appear again early next month.

Last month, a 17-year-old Melbourne man pleaded guilty to a terrorism-related charge after explosives were found in his home. A week earlier, two young men were charged with conspiracy to attack government buildings after they were arrested during counter-terrorism raids in Sydney.

Australia has been on heightened alert for attacks by home-grown terrorists since 2014, when officials thwarted a massive Islamic-State sponsored attack that was plotted by local IS members.