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Police arrest man, 39, over ‘samurai sword attack’

A man found with two knives has been arrested following reports of a disturbance.

The 39-year-old is being linked to reports of an armed man at West Ham Tube station, east London, at rush hour on Thursday, British Transport Police (BTP) said.

The arrest was made on Court Street, Whitechapel at around 5.40 pm.

Commuters were delayed across the capital following the sighting of a man with a ‘samurai sword’ on a tube at West Ham, roughly three miles from Whitechapel. 

There were major delays on the District Line between Barking and Upminster after police descended on West Ham station at around 5.30pm.  

A man wielding the sword was stopped by officers outside the tube station in east London. Officers have said a 39-year-old man has been arrested tonight

There is panic on the line following the sighting on a tube at West Ham station

There is panic on the line following the sighting on a tube at West Ham station

Videos and photos on social media this evening show shocked members of the public in Whitechapel looking on as police appear to stop a man.  

Trains across the city, including at Victoria train station, were held at stations amid the panic.

Commuters reported being stuck on non-moving eastbound District line trains for more than 20 minutes. 

A statement posted on the British Transport Police website said: ‘A 39-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of possession of two offensive weapons after he was found with two knives. He has been taken to police custody as enquiries continue.

‘There are no reported injuries and at this stage both incidents are being linked.

‘This incident is not believed to be terror related.’

People took to social media to after trains were delayed at rush hour this evening 

People took to social media to after trains were delayed at rush hour this evening 

Horrified bystanders looked on in horror as the man was tackled in the street

Horrified bystanders looked on in horror as the man was tackled in the street

Transport for London said there are were delays on the Hammersmith and City Line between Liverpool Street and Barking, which cleared shortly before 7pm.

One commuter wrote on Twitter: ‘Told to get off platform by police while they investigate. No eastbound service. They’re looking for the man.’  

A TfL spokesperson said police were called to reports of an aggressive passenger. 

Anyone with any information is asked to get in touch by sending a text to 61016 or by calling 0800 40 50 40. Alternatively, you can pass information to Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555 111 

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