Teen arrested on suspicion of planting Tube bomb 'an Iraqi refugee who moved to the UK aged 15'

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The teenager arrested on suspicion of planting a bomb on the Tube is reportedly an Iraqi orphan who moved over to the UK as a refugee three years ago, a community leader said today.

The 18-year-old was detained by police on Saturday morning in connection with the terror attack, which saw 30 people injured when a home-made bomb was detonated on a packed carriage.

Following the arrest, police raided a house in Sunbury-on-Thames, Surrey – home to foster care couple Penelope and Ronald Jones who have reportedly taken in refugee children in the past.

As police continued to search the property, a local council leader told reporters that he believed the teenage suspect is an Iraqi orphan who moved to Britain aged 15 after his parents died.

Leader of Spelthorne Borough Council Ian Harvey, whose ward is Sunbury East, said he had learnt about the boy’s background from neighbours of the Joneses and publicly available information.

He told the Press Association: “One thing I understand is that he was an Iraqi refugee who came here aged 15 – his parents died in Iraq.”

Foster carers: Penelope Jones and Ronald Jones, who are registered to the property being searched, were awarded MBEs in 2010 (PA)

The Standard put the claims to the Met police– leading the investigation – but a spokesman could not confirm or deny the reports.

He said the force “would not comment on any details surrounding the suspect’s identity”.

London Tube bombing: What we know so far

Kent police arrested the teen on Saturday morning in the departures area of Dover ferry terminal.

He was taken into custody at a local police station and will be transferred to a south London police station in due course.

Arrest: police at Dover Port, where detectives investigating the Parsons Green bombing detained an 18-year-old man (PA)

Tourist Daniel Vaselicu, 31, said he saw the “young and light-skinned” man being interrogated by two unarmed police officers moments before his arrest in Dover.

Hours later, armed police evacuated the residential street in Surrey and raided a property registered to the two foster carers.

Mrs and Mrs Jones have been foster carers for 40 years who had taken in up to 300 children, including eight refugees.

Parsons Green bombing: Arrest is ‘very significant’ says Rudd

According to reports, they had an 18-year-old and a 22-year-old staying with them recently.

The couple are said to be staying with friends for at least the next five days following the police raids, during which surrounding houses were evacuated by counter-terror officers, with residents told they had “one minute” to flee their homes.

On Saturday night, police arrested a 21-year-old man in Hounslow in connection with the investigation.

Bomb: The explosive device was planted on the floor of a Tube carriage (PA)

The suspect, who was detained under the terrorism act, has been taken to a south London police station where he remains in custody.

Following the second arrest, police searched another residential address in Stanwell, Surrey.

And forensic teams were also searching a property in Hounslow on Sunday afternoon, with a cordon erected around the house. People were told to stay in their homes.

Explosion: 30 people were injured (PA)

Thirty people were injured when the improvised device exploded during rush hour at Parsons Green station, with all but one now discharged from hospital. 

A key strand of the investigation has focused on CCTV as officers comb through footage to establish who planted the device, and when and where it was placed on the train.

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