A suicide bomber stormed the offices of a HGV training firm on Tottenham Court Road in London this afternoon, claiming he was strapped with gas canisters to his body and holding a blow torch threatening to blow himself up.
The ordeal has now ended and the man, Michael Green, was arrested at approximately 3pm. During the siege Green took four members of staff as hostages (believed to be a company director and three salesmen).
27-year-old Abby Baafi, the head of training and operations at the firm, was in the office during the siege and was freed early-on by Green because she is three months pregnant. She said
We were in the office and someone came in. I recognised him because he was one of our previous customers. He came in with big gasoline cylinders strapped to his body and threatened to blow up the office.He said he doesn’t care about his life, he doesn’t care about anything, he just wants to blow up the office. He was specifically looking for me but I didn’t say my name was Abby and he let me go because I am three months pregnant.
Green made members of staff throw computer screens, boxes and papers out of the window. Police snipers, explosive experts and negotiators surrounded the area and around 1,000 workers were evacuated from nearby buildings before authorities managed to arrest Green.
It is not known why Green wanted to blow up the building, however according to Baafi he wanted his money back after failing two HGV driving tests and apparently shouted ‘I have nothing more to live for.’
Check out photos from the siege below.