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Terror charges dropped against Australian teen

Terrorism charges were dropped on Tuesday against a teenager in Melbourne who had been accused of plotting to behead a police officer and attack a parade.

Prosecutors told the court there was insufficient evidence against Harun Causevic, aged 18, and that terrorism-related charges against him had been dropped, according to the Australian Federal Police.

Causevic had been in custody since April under new anti-terrorism laws that grant police wide powers to detain suspects.

He still faces three weapons charges, including possession of a bayonet, knuckle dusters and another knife, broadcaster ABC reported.

Causevic’s lawyer said he would plead guilty to the weapons charges, and Causevic was allowed out on bail after surrendering his passport, the report said.

Anti-terror police told a court in June that Causevic was a close associate of two other terrorism suspects, one of whom, Numan Haider, aged 18, was shot dead while attacking police with a knife in 2014.

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Police alleged that Causevic and 18-year-old Sevdet Besim planned to launch a terror attack on Anzac Day (April 25) a national holiday commemorating Australia’s war veterans.

Police said the group planned to ram a car into a police officer, behead the officer, steal his gun and attack the veterans’ parade.

Besim remained in custody charged with conspiracy to commit a terrorist act. He is alleged to have been in contact with a 14-year-old boy in England who has also been charged on terrorism offences, ABC reported.

A third teenager, Mehran Azami, also remained in custody charged with 19 counts of illegally importing weapons, the report said.

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