LONDON — Three men, including two British soldiers, have been charged under terror laws with being members of a banned neo-Nazi group, police said on Monday.
The two soldiers — Mikko Vehvilainen, 32, who was garrisoned in Cyprus, and Mark Barrett, 24, who was in Wales — were charged with being members of National Action, which last year became the first far-right group to be outlawed by the British government.
Vehvilainen and a third man, Alexander Deakin, 22, were also accused of possessing documents useful for terrorists.
Five men, including four serving soldiers, were arrested on suspicion of terror offences last week in an investigation led by the West Midlands Police’s counter-terrorism unit.
“The arrests were pre-planned and intelligence-led and there was no risk to the public’s safety,” the police statement said.
National Action was outlawed last December, six months after the assassination of lawmaker Jo Cox by a far-right sympathizer.
Cox, an MP from the main opposition Labour party, was shot and stabbed to death in her constituency by Thomas Mair in June 2016.
Mair shouted “Britain first!” as he killed her, and National Action later praised Mair’s actions.
When she banned the organisation, Interior Minister Amber Rudd branded it as “racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic”.