The lawyer for the man who authorities say carried out last week’s attack in Stockholm says the suspect “admits to a terrorist crime.” Rakhmat Akilov, the 39-year-old suspect in last Friday’s truck attack that killed four people and injured several others, was detained following the plea entered by Johan Eriksson, his attorney. Akilov, an Uzbek national whom Swedish authorities say were known to them, had been denied residency in Sweden, and in December 2016 had been told he had four weeks to leave the country. But he disappeared in February. Although no group has claimed responsibility for the attack, officials say Akilov expressed sympathy for ISIS. Akilov fled from the scene of the attack, but was arrested later in a Stockholm suburb. The attack has prompted Sweden to reconsider its anti-terrorism laws. Swedish Justice Minister Morgan Johansson told Agence France-Presse: “We want to give the police the opportunity, without concrete suspicion of a crime, to go into workplaces to make sure that people who work there are in Sweden [legally].”
Here’s what we know on Tuesday, April 11:
—The lawyer for the man who authorities say carried out last week’s attack in Stockholm says the suspect “admits to a terrorist crime.”
—Rakhmat Akilov, a 39-year-old Uzbek national, had been denied residency in Sweden and asked to leave the country.
—Four people were killed in the Stockholm truck attack and several others were injured.
—No group has claimed responsibility, but officials say Akilov expressed sympathy for ISIS.
Stockholm Attack Suspect 'Admits to a Terrorist Crime,' His Lawyer Says
Death Toll Rises, and Police Arrest a Person Connected to the Attack
Updated on April 7 at 4:20 p.m. ET
The death toll has risen to four, with 15 injured in Friday’s truck attack, police said. The total had been in question, because police were deferring to local hospitals. Nine of the injured were hurt seriously, and Radio Sweden reported some of them were children. The Associated Press also reported that police say they arrested one person who was connected to the attack. Police had previously released a still image taken from surveillance cameras in the area of a man in a hoodie emerging from the subway system, but would not say if this was the man arrested, or how the man was connected to the attack.
Den preliminära uppgiften om skadeläget är fyra avlidna och 15 skadade personer.— Polisen Stockholm (@polisen_sthlm) April 7, 2017
Swedish Authorities Launch Preliminary Terrorism Investigation
Swedish authorities have launched a preliminary investigation into “suspected terrorist crimes” over a truck attack that left at least two people dead and several others injured. No arrests have been made, and the individual who drove the truck into the crowd has not been found. Anders Thornberg, the head of Sweden’s security agency, told the Associated Press that agents are working to “identify the person or persons behind the attack.” No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.
The Truck Used in the Attack Was Stolen From a Brewery
The vehicle used in the attack was a delivery truck owned by a brewing company. A spokesman for Spendrups brewery told Radio Sweden the truck was stolen earlier in the day, and the driver of the truck was being questioned by police. The truck was driven down a street crowded with shoppers and rammed into a high-end department store, Ahlens. Vehicles as a weapon of terrorism have become more widespread. Last year in the south of France, in Nice, an attacker drove a truck down the Promenade des Anglais during Bastille Day celebrations and killed more than 80 people.
A Previous Terrorist Attack Targeted the Same Area
This area was the site of another terrorist attack in 2010, when Swedish citizen Taimour Abdulwahab, who was born in Iraq, detonated a suicide bomb that killed himself and injured two others. Abdulwahab planned to explode a car bomb that would drive people toward Drottninggatan Street, the site of the most recent attack, and where he planned to place more bombs. It was Christmas time and a crowd of shoppers had packed the area, but after the car bomb exploded, Abdulwahab was killed when a bomb he carried went off. Investigators later discovered that Abdulwahab was living in Britain at the time, and he appeared to have acted alone. Abdulwahab was apparently upset over Swedish cartoons that he considered blasphemous, as well as Sweden’s participation in the war in Afghanistan. The incident was called the first Islam-related terrorist attack in the country.
Update: No Arrests Made, Swedish Police Say
Swedish police said no one has been arrested in connection to the attack, correcting earlier reports that one person had been detained. Dan Eliasson, Sweden’s top police chief, told reporters that the individual who drove the vehicle into the crowd has not been found. Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said the incident is being treated as a terrorist attack. Live footage of the scene showed smoke rising from the Ahlens department store on Drottninggatan Street, a popular and frequently crowded area.
JUST IN: Video shows people fleeing after truck drives into crowd on street in Stockholm; police say there are several people injured. pic.twitter.com/2O6CUzngEP— ABC News (@ABC) April 7, 2017