June 14, 2018 / 12:43 PM / 2 months ago

Germany detains Tunisian suspected of planning 'biological' attack

BERLIN (Reuters) - German prosecutors have obtained an arrest warrant from a judge for a Tunisian man suspected of planning an Islamist-motivated attack and the manufacturing of a “biological weapon” using ricin.

Police waits outside the apartment of 29-year-old Sief Allah H., in Cologne, Germany, June 15, 2018, a Tunisian man who was detained on June 13, 2018, suspected of planning an Islamist-motivated attack and the manufacturing of a "biological weapon" using ricin. REUTERS/Thilo Schmuelgen

The GBA Federal Prosecutor’s Office said in a statement on Thursday that 29-year-old Sief Allah H. had been detained in the western city of Cologne on June 13 after a search of his apartment.

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It said the suspect had bought 1,000 grains of ricin, a naturally occurring poison found in castor beans, and an electric coffee grinder online.

The prosecutors said they still had not determined how far the suspect was in the planning of an attack using ricin.

“There is strong suspicion that he had deliberately produced chemical weapons,” the GBA said. “In addition he faces the initial suspicion of preparing a serious act of violent subversion against the state.”

There is no evidence so far that the suspect is a member of a “terrorist organization”, it added. Prosecutors were also not aware that he had set a date and target for a possible attack.

Reporting by Joseph Nasr; Editing by Gareth Jones

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