Wednesday, April 22, 2015

France: Algerian Muslim ‘planning terror attack on churches’ arrested in Paris

(AFP) Sid Ahmed Ghlam, a 24-year-old electrical engineering student and an Algerian national, was arrested in Paris on Sunday morning after calling an ambulance. It appears that he had accidentally shot himself in the leg.

After the emergency services alerted police that they were treating a gunshot wound, Ghlam’s car was discovered by following a blood trail.

Inside the vehicle was an “arsenal” of weapons, Molins said, including handguns, bullet-proof vests and an AK-47 assault rifle.

They also found a laptop and three mobile phones, which Molins said were used to contact an accomplice in Syria “who explicitly asked him to target a church”.

More weapons were found in Ghlam’s flat, as well as “documents in Arabic relating to al Qaeda and the Islamic State (IS) group”.

As well as the weapons and documents, police said they had also found magnetic flashing blue lights of the type that police fix to the roofs of unmarked cars, and orange “Police” armbands used by non-uniformed officers.

Ghlam’s DNA was also found in the car of a 32-year-old fitness instructor Aurélie Châtelain who was found dead in Villejuif, a suburb of Paris, on Sunday.

Earlier, Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said Ghlam was known to intelligence services for wanting to fight with jihadists in Syria.