York & North Yorkshire

Social media messages: North Yorkshire police arrest five

Five people have been arrested in North Yorkshire by police monitoring social networking sites in the wake of disorder in several English cities.

Two 18-year-old men from York were arrested on Friday on suspicion of conspiracy to commit burglary.

Two men from Thirsk, aged 24 and 27, were held on suspicion of conspiracy to commit violent disorder. All four remain in custody.

A 38-year-old Scarborough man arrested on Tuesday was released without charge.

'Alarm and distress'

A North Yorkshire Police spokesman said: "While it remains calm in the North Yorkshire and the city of York, thanks to the strong community spirit and the increased police presence, officers are nevertheless targeting individuals who express support for the disorder and associated criminal activity on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter."

Temporary Deputy Chief Constable Tim Madgwick said: "We will not stand for any hint of incitement or encouragement to commit crime or violent disorder.

"Even if there is no intention to carry out the threats, making such comments causes alarm and distress to many people.

"We hope these arrests send a very clear message to anyone who foolishly thinks it's a good idea to use recent events to incite violence and criminality."

The force said that following a shake-up of shifts and the cancellation of rest days, there was "a significantly increased police presence" throughout the county, with further back-up should any incidents escalate.

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