[CLARIFICATION: An earlier version of this article suggested that the LAPD has previously used racial profiling. In the referenced Los Angeles Times article, Chief Downing specifically stated that the LAPD has never, and will never, tolerate racial profiling.]

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Senior police officials on Wednesday warned of potential terrorist attacks in Southern California amid a growing risk of war breaking out overseas.

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KNX 1070’s Ed Mertz reports the LAPD is concerned with what it calls a number of “active” plots in the Southland.

“In this region we have active terrorist plots, in this region, right now,” said Deputy Chief Michael Downing, commanding officer of the LAPD’s counter-terrorism unit.

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The Department is currently tracking “government of Iran operatives, Hezbollah, sovereign citizen, homegrown violent extremists, animal rights groups” and others, Downing said.

He added that Iranian or Hezbollah agents may initiate attacks locally if war erupts between the U.S. and Iran.

The stark warning comes amid a policy shift from the Los Angeles Police Commission, which approved new guidelines on how officers can document what they deem to be suspicious behavior.

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The oversight panel voted unanimously Tuesday to authorize officers to report any person who may be involved in activity that may not be illegal but could be linked to terrorism.