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Jewish Museum Shooting Arrest

June 2, 2014 by staff 

Jewish Museum Shooting Arrest, French customs agents have arrested an armed “jihadist” from northern France who is suspected of killing four people at the Brussels Jewish Museum, authorities announced on Sunday.

The suspect, named as Mehdi Nemmouche from Roubaix, was arrested on Friday during a chance check by customs agents searching for illicit drugs at the main Marseille bus station. He was on a coach travelling from Amsterdam to Marseille via Brussels.

Authorities said he had a Kalashnikov and a pistol in his possession, identical to the weapons used in the museum attack on 24 May in which two Israeli tourists, a French volunteer and a Belgian museum employee were shot dead. The suspect also had in his bag a GoPro camera and a large quantity of ammunition. All the items in his possession have been sent to Lyon foranlysis.

Nemmouche was known to French counter-t*rror*sm police, who had placed him under surveillance after his return from Syria last year, where he was suspected of having joined Islamist fighters. Previously, he was reported to have travelled to the UK, Belgium, Lebanon and Turkey after serving a five-year jail sentence in Roubaix, about 60 miles (100km) from Brussels. Some media reports put the suspect’s age at 32, others at 29.

The French president, Fran├žois Hollande, praised the work of the French authorities, saying the “presumed killer” had been arrested “as soon as he set foot in France, which happened to be in Marseille”.

BFMTV reported that the suspect was carrying a selection of newspaper articles about the museum killings, which were filmed by the building’s surveillance video cameras. He may have been attempting to flee to Algeria. Nemmouche can be kept in custody until Thursday under French anti-t*rror*sm laws. He is being questioned by counter-t*rror*sm police in Levallois-Perret outside Paris.

Police have been trying to establish whether the Brussels attack was an isolated act by a “lone wolf” or whether the killer belonged to a radical Islamist network.

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