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Man charged over city office siege
Tottenham Court Road in central London was closed after reports a man wearing gas canisters threatened to blow himself up
A man has been charged over a London siege which closed one of the country's busiest shopping streets.
Tottenham Court Road was closed for hours on Friday after a man stormed into an office allegedly making threats and carrying a weapon.
After negotiators and armed police were called, the suspect emerged and was led away by officers.
Tonight, a Metropolitan Police spokesman said Michael Green, 48, of Stevenage, Hertfordshire, had been charged with several offences - possession of a weapon for the discharge of a noxious liquid/gas or electrical incapacitating device; false imprisonment; making a bomb hoax; causing criminal damage and recklessly endangering life.
He has been remanded in custody to appear at Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court.
Detective Chief Inspector Raffaele D'Orsi, of Camden police, said: "(Friday's) events were extremely rare and I would like to thank the general public and local business community for the support they provided to my officers in dealing with these matters so expeditiously. Finally, I can confirm it is all back to business as usual in Tottenham Court Road and the surrounding area."
Earlier, a police chief applauded his officers for their response to the drama.
Commander Adrian Hanstock said: "This was a potentially life threatening matter owing to our concerns that a suspect had in their possession flammable liquids and other dangerous articles. The Met was able to quickly draw together expertise from across the emergency services to deal with the incident making use of specially trained personnel working to tried and tested procedures.
"Whilst this incident has drawn significant attention to some of the resources, equipment and officers we have at our disposal, in reality only a small proportion of officers throughout the police service are trained in these specialist techniques. We do not call upon these tactics unless it is absolutely necessary and considered proportionate to the threat.
"Local Safer Neighbourhoods teams have now resumed their regular foot patrols and are working alongside the community to provide further reassurance and information; evidence of the usual, unarmed service that is the familiar face of British policing. In fact, less than six hours after such a serious incident began, Tottenham Court Road was returned to 'business as usual' for the majority of people in that area."