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Three more arrests in Woolwich murder probe

Three further arrests have been made in connection with the murder of off-duty soldier Lee Rigby, police have said.

The Met said counter terrorism officers arrested three men, aged 21, 24 and 28, on Saturday evening on suspicion of conspiracy to commit murder – a Taser was used on two of them.

Drummer Rigby was run over and then attacked in Woolwich on Wednesday.

Two men arrested on suspicion of murder at the scene remain in custody in hospital in a stable condition.

Michael Adebolajo, 28, and Michael Adebowale, 22, were shot and wounded by police.

A 29-year-old man, arrested on Thursday on suspicion of conspiracy to murder, has been bailed to return pending further inquiries. Two women, aged 29 and 31, also arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder on Thursday, were released without charge on Friday.

Search warrants

In other developments:

Police said the arrests made on Saturday evening were made at two locations in south-east London. The 24-year-old and the 28-year-old were arrested at a residential address in south-east London while the 21-year-old was arrested in the street in Charlton Lane, Charlton.

The 21-year-old and 28-year-old were shot with Taser stun guns but neither required hospital treatment, a Met Police statement said.

Search warrants were being carried out at four further south-east London homes on Saturday night, the statement added.

‘Solidarity march’

Shortly after the killing of Drummer Rigby on Wednesday afternoon, suspect Mr Adebolajo was filmed by a passer-by saying he had carried out the attack because British soldiers killed Muslims every day.

Both Mr Adebolajo and Mr Adebowale, Britons of Nigerian descent, are understood to be converts to Islam, with Mr Adebolajo originally coming from a Christian family.

Speaking about the fight against the rise of the extremist ideology, Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police Sir Peter Fahy told the BBC there had been a “steady stream of plots”, which had on the whole been foiled by police.

But he said the police and the security services were “particularly concerned” about people travelling from Britain to conflict areas such as Mali, Syria and Iraq and the increase in extremist websites.

Tributes have continued to be paid to Drummer Rigby, with a steady stream of well-wishers adding to the hundreds of flowers already placed near the scene of the killing.

Scores of motorcyclists supporting the Help For Heroes charity rode past the scene in a show of support for Drummer Rigby’s family.

And a “solidarity march” by the Nigerian community took place on Saturday morning from Plumstead station to Woolwich town centre.

‘Fallen soldier’

Prayers will be said on Sunday morning at a service dedicated to Drummer Rigby at St Peter the Apostle Roman Catholic Church, in Woolwich, as well as during a service at the town’s St Mary Magdalene Parish Church.

The congregation of his local church in his home town of Middleton, Greater Manchester, will also say prayers.

On Friday, Drummer Rigby’s wife Rebecca, the mother of his two-year-old son, said she had been aware of the dangers of her husband serving in countries where there was armed conflict, including Afghanistan, but added: “You don’t expect it to happen when he’s in the UK. You think they’re safe.”

She said: “I love Lee and always will. I am proud to be his wife. He was a devoted father to our son Jack and we will both miss him terribly.”

Drummer Rigby’s stepfather, Ian Rigby, said: “We would like to say ‘Goodnight Lee, rest in peace our fallen soldier. We love you loads and words cannot describe how loved and sadly missed you will be’.”