Canada makes 3rd security-related arrest before summit

Thu Jun 24, 2010 8:38pm EDT
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By Ka Yan Ng and Pav Jordan

TORONTO (Reuters) - Toronto police arrested a man near the G20 meeting site on Thursday whose car contained a chainsaw, crossbow and fuel containers, but officials said later the case did not appear to be tied to the summit.

The 53-year-old man was pulled over just a block from where tall steel fences have been erected to protect leaders of the Group of 20 advanced and emerging economies who meet on Saturday and Sunday in Canada's most populous city.

The battered silver sedan had a large crate strapped to its roof. Also found in the car was the man's dog.

"We do not believe it is G20-related," G8/G20 spokeswoman Catherine Martin said on Thursday night.

Toronto Police Constable Hugh Smith told local television the suspect had "no reasonable explanation for the weapons that we observed that were in physical plain view."

It was the third security-related arrest in recent days before the G20 and G8 summits. Canada is spending C$1 billion on security, deploying thousands of police from across the country to protect two summit sites surrounded by 10-foot-high (3-meter) steel fences set in concrete.

Earlier this week, police arrested a man and his wife in an upscale neighborhood in north Toronto on explosive and firearms charges.

The Integrated Security Unit, which is overseeing security for the summits, did not say what, if any, direct threat the two may have posed, but said there was "no risk to public safety at this time."   Continued...

<p>A police officer stands guard as people cross the street ahead of the G20 summit in Toronto, June 22, 2010. REUTERS/Mark Blinch.</p>