Westminster operation: Man appears in court on terror charges

A court sketch of Khalid Mohamed Omar Ali Image copyright Julia Quenzler

A man arrested near Downing Street last month has appeared in court charged with preparing terrorist acts.

Khalid Mohamed Omar Ali, 27, from north London, is also charged with two counts of making or having explosives.

Mr Omar Ali, who was arrested on Parliament Street on 27 April, appeared at Westminster Magistrates' Court.

Not guilty pleas were entered on his behalf after he told the court that he did not recognise the charges.

The two explosives charges, under the Explosive Substances Act, relate to alleged activity in Afghanistan in 2012.

Mr Omar Ali was out of the UK between 2011 and November 2016.

After his arrest in Westminster, three knives are said to have been recovered from his person.

Mr Omar Ali is a UK national who was born overseas and went to school in Tottenham.

He appeared in court wearing handcuffs and spoke to confirm his name, date of birth and address.

When the charges were read out, Mr Omar Ali said he did not recognise them.

Senior District Judge Emma Arbuthnot then directed that not guilty pleas be entered on his behalf.

He refused legal representation when it was offered to him.

Mr Omar Ali was remanded in custody ahead of a preliminary hearing at the Old Bailey on 19 May.