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Richard reid accomplice arrested { December 3 2003 }

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Briton charged in explosives plot
Wednesday, December 3, 2003 Posted: 2:40 PM EST (1940 GMT)

LONDON, England (CNN) -- A British man has been charged with conspiring with convicted shoe bomber Richard Reid to carry out a terror attack.

Sajid Badat, 24, was arrested by anti-terrorist police on November 27 at his home in Gloucester, southwest England, and was charged Wednesday with three offenses, including the possession of explosives.

Reid, a London native, was sentenced to life in prison last January after being convicted of trying to blow up an airliner carrying 197 passengers between Paris and New York in December 2001. Prosecutors accused Reid of attempting to blow up the aircraft with explosives hidden in his shoes.

Badat "unlawfully and maliciously conspired with Richard Reid and others unknown to cause by an explosive device an explosion of a nature likely to endanger life or cause serious injury to property in the United Kingdom or elsewhere," London's Metropolitan Police said Wednesday.

Police have carried out a number of raids in central and southern England in the last week arresting more than 20 people.

Badat is due to make an appearance before London's Bow Street Magistrates Court on Thursday.

Last Thursday, British police found explosive material at Badat's home, a Gloucester police spokesman said.

The material was safely removed, police said, and neighborhood residents who were earlier evacuated were allowed to return home.

Badat was arrested under Section 41 of Britain's Terrorist Act on "suspicion of involvement in the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism," according to Gloucestershire Deputy Chief Constable Martin Baker.

Britain's top police officer Sir John Stevens has said that London will be on high terror alert for the foreseeable future. Police had previously warned that an attack in Britain was almost inevitable.

Security services were put on a heightened state of alert after they received warnings of a possible al Qaeda attack.

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