Swedish terror suspects appear in Danish court

Three suspects arrested in connection with a foiled "Mumbai-style" plot to massacre staff at a newspaper that published caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad, faced a Danish court on Thursday.

“Three of the suspects are appearing in court right now,” Trine Maria Ilsøe, a spokesperson for Danish intelligence agency PET, told AFP Thursday.

“The three suspects that came from Sweden are appearing in court” in the Copenhagen suburb of Glostrup, she said.

Danish and Swedish intelligence agencies said Wednesday they had arrested five men who were planning an imminent assault on the Copenhagen offices of the Jyllands-Posten daily.

According to PET, they were planning to “kill as many people as possible” and police seized a sub-machine gun in connection with the arrests.

Four men — including three who had travelled to Copenhagen overnight to Wednesday from a Stockholm suburb — were arrested in Denmark, and one was

arrested in the greater Stockholm area.

Danish media reported that the fourth man arrested in Denmark, a 26-year-old Iraqui asylum seeker who arranged a flat in Denmark for the men traveling from Sweden, would be released later Thursday, but suspicions against him remained.

The online edition of daily Politiken reported the man would be later charged with “trying to conduct terror.”

Swedish media reported the man arrested in Stockholm, 37-year-old Swedish

citizen, was due to appear for a remand hearing at the Attunda district court in the Stockholm suburb of Sollentuna on Thursday afternoon.

He is suspected of preparing terrorist crimes.

Jyllands-Posten published a dozen cartoons in 2005 of the Prophet Muhammad,

which triggered violent and sometimes deadly protests around the world.

The 2008 attacks in Mumbai saw 10 heavily armed gunmen storm three luxury hotels, the city’s main railway station, a popular tourist restaurant and a Jewish centre. The ensuing massacre left 166 people dead.


Swedish prosecutors upgrade Almedalen knife attack to terror crime

Prosecutors in Sweden are now treating the murder at the Almedalen political festival as a terror crime, with the country's Säpo security police taking over the investigation.

Swedish prosecutors upgrade Almedalen knife attack to terror crime

In a press release issued on Monday evening, the Swedish Prosecution Authority, said that the 32-year-old attacker, Theodor Engström, was now suspected of the crime of “terrorism through murder”, and also “preparation for a terror crime through preparation for murder”. 

Engström stabbed the psychiatrist Ing-Marie Wieselgren last Wednesday as she was on her way to moderate a seminar at the Almedalen political festival on the island of Gotland. 

Although he was a former member of the neo-Nazi Nordic Resistance Movement, police said his motive seemed to be to protest against Sweden’s psychiatry services, who he felt had treated his own mental illness badly. 

The release gave no details as to why the 32-year-old was now being investigated for a more serious crime, but terror expert Magnus Ranstorp told the Expressen newspaper that the shift indicated that police had uncovered new evidence. 

READ ALSO: What do we now know about the Almedalen knife attack? 

“The new crime classification means that they’ve either found a political motive for the attack which meets the threshold for terrorism, and that might be a political motive for murdering Ing-Marie Wieselgren,” he said. “Or they might have discovered that he was scouting out a politician, or another target that could be considered political.” 

Engström’s defence lawyer said last week that his client, who he described as disturbed and incoherent, had spoken in police interrogations of having “a higher-up target”.