Terror raids result in two men charged

By Angelo Risso And Toby Mann
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Two NSW men arrested in anti-terror raids

Two men have been arrested in early morning counter-terrorism raids in western Sydney.

Two men have been charged after counter-terrorism officers raided two homes in Sydney's west over an alleged plot targeting a naval base and police buildings.

The raids were led by Australian Federal Police and NSW Police under Operation Appleby, which was set up in September 2014 to investigate group of about 20 young men who investigators believe have committed to carrying out a terrorist attack in Australia.

Mohammad Rashad Almouie, 20, was arrested in Bankstown and Abdullah Salihy, 24, in Merrylands before both were brought to Parramatta Local Court on Wednesday.

Almouie is charged with conspiracy to do an act in preparation to commit a terrorist act, an offence that carries a penalty of life imprisonment.

Salihy is charged with knowingly collecting or making a document connected with terrorism, which has a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison.

Neither applied for bail and it was formally refused ahead of their cases returning to court next year.

Police will allege Salihy knowingly made a document connected with the preparation for a terrorist act on police buildings and Sydney's Garden Island navy facility on the harbour near in Woolloomooloo, in the city's east.

"These are very serious charges," NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn said.

Police will allege both men were part of a "group of people [who] came together with the intent to do something and they started to make preparations to carry out a terrorist act".

"We will allege that the Woolloomooloo navy base was one of those locations," Ms Burn said.

There have been a series of police raids since the biggest counter-terrorism raids in Australia's history were conducted in Sydney in September 2014, resulting in the seizure of documents and other material.

Further raids this year came after NSW police accountant Curtis Cheng was shot dead outside Police Headquarters in Parramatta in October.

However, Ms Burn said there was no specific terrorist threat.

"I do need to stress that this activity today relates to events of last year," she said.

"There is no current threat."

Australia's domestic terror threat alert level is currently at `probable', meaning the public should exercise caution.

Neighbours of Salihy were surprised by the news of his arrest, saying he had only just moved to the area.

"They're only new here," a neighbour told AAP.