British teens face terror charges after being detained en route to Syria

Posted at 11:31 PM, Mar 15, 2015
and last updated 2015-03-15 23:31:52-04

Three teenagers from northwest London were released on bail Sunday after their alleged plans to travel to Syria led to their arrest.

Two 17-year-olds boys and a 19-year-old man were arrested “on suspicion of preparation of terrorist acts,” the Metropolitan Police said.

The investigation started on Friday, after police learned the two 17-year-olds were missing and were believed to be traveling to Syria. They were traveling with a 19-year-old, police said.

British authorities shared intelligence regarding the 17-year-olds with Turkish officials on Friday, and that night, the individuals landed in Istanbul on a flight from Barcelona, Spain, a Turkish official told CNN.

The teens were stopped, along with another person who had been regarded as suspicious by Turkish intelligence working at the airport’s risk analysis center, which monitors risky flights and runs checks on suspicious passengers trying to enter Turkey.

Turkish authorities questioned the teens, the Turkish official said, and the Metropolitan Police said the three arrived back in London shortly before midnight Saturday and were arrested.

“When we have intelligence shared with us there is no problem. We stop them and directly deport them. And of course Turkish intelligence is always on the lookout as well,” the Turkish official said.

Sunday’s news come on the heels of developments in the case of three British girls who are believed to have entered Syria to join ISIS.

Turkey on Thursday arrested a person who worked for an undisclosed nation’s intelligence service on suspicion of helping the girls, according to Turkey’s foreign minister.

On Friday, a Turkish television network aired a video purportedly showing the girls preparing to cross the Turkish border into Syria.