Marine denies fraud and drugs charges

Credit: Metropolitan Police

A serving British Marine charged with terror offences has denied fraud and drugs-related charges, as he appeared in court.

30-year-old Ciaran Maxwell, who has an address in Exminster, Devon, but is originally from Larne, stands accused of stashing explosives and weapons in purpose-built caches in England and Northern Ireland.

He also allegedly compiled a library of terrorism documents, including instructions on how to make explosives and tactics used by terrorist organisations.

He was not asked to plead on those terror-related charges but was remanded in custody and will appear again at the Old Bailey on September 19.Maxwell, who wore a grey tracksuit for the hearing at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London, is also charged with possessing articles in connection with use for fraud and possessing cannabis with intent to supply.

Flanked by four plain-clothed officers in the dock, he pleaded not guilty to both charges, which will be tried in conjunction with the alleged terror offences at Crown Court.

Maxwell was arrested on August 24 by officers from the Metropolitan Police Service's counter-terrorism command in an operation that also involved Avon and Somerset and Devon and Cornwall Police.

It is alleged that between January 1 2011 and August 24 2016, Maxwell manufactured explosive substances and constructed explosive devices.

He is accused of carrying out research resulting in the creation of a library of documents likely to be useful to someone committing or preparing an act of terrorism - specifically information regarding "the manufacture of explosive substances, the construction of explosive devices and tactics used by terrorist organisations".

Maxwell is also charged with getting an image of an adapted Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) pass card and items of PSNI uniform.