After five days of police custody, they were indicted for “criminal association for terrorist in view of the preparation of crimes against the people”, a-t-on learned of the parquet de Paris.
“A large-scale attack” has been avoided had indicated a little earlier, François Hollande, on a trip to Nimes, while France is struck for nearly two years by a wave of terrorist attacks unprecedented, having made 238 dead. Four French citizens between the ages of 35 to 37 years, “longtime friends”, had been arrested last weekend in Strasbourg. Unknown services, counter-terrorism, the two are suspected of having stayed in Syria in 2015.
Four weapons and “written very clear allegiance to Daech” (islamic State) have been found during the searches, according to the public prosecutor of Paris, François Molins. The fifth suspect, Hicham E., Moroccan 26-year-old (WELL 26) arrested in Marseille, was reported to radicalization by the Portuguese authorities, the country where he resided, and was expel Turkey in 2015. More than 4,000 euros, for, according to investigators, the acquisition of weapons, were seized during his arrest.
The commando of Strasbourg and the suspect morocco does not know this, after the first elements of the investigation. But they had common instructions “communicated by a client from the area, iraqi-syrian,” detailed the prosecutor.
The men in this network were “in possession or in search of weapons and financing”, “ attempted to pass the act,” and “looking for targets”, noted the prosecutor. He stated that the passage to the act of the strasbourg project group was scheduled for 1 December, “we cannot determine at this stage the precise target chosen.” The operation of phones and computers found during the searches revealed that a dozen sites in the paris region had been the subject of research on the internet.
As for potential targets, among which the 36 quai des Orfèvres, headquarters of the PJ, the Christmas market of Champs-Elysées, Disneyland Paris, the terraces of cafés in the Twentieth arrondissement, Charonne metro station as well as several places of worship. In police custody, one of the suspects arrested in Strasbourg has also referred to the headquarters of the PJ in paris, but also that of the ISB in Levallois-Perret (Hauts-de-Seine).
“It’s unclear still whether they provide a single action or coordinated attacks”, according to a source close to the investigation. The investigation began eight months ago. On the 14th of June, in the Euro football, Nasser B., 38 years old, and Lamary N., 40 years old, are arrested, suspected of having contracted consumer loans to finance terrorist activities. The two men are in contact with a donor established order in Syria, itself monitored by the intelligence services of the French.
The ISB decides to lay a bait: it sets up a cache of weapons in the Val-d’oise for several months, to try to attract other members of the
network that could go on the attack. In vain. On 14 November, a message between the sponsor and the members of the group of strasbourg is intercepted, sparking fears of a passage to the act is imminent. The ISB organizes, in the emergency, the operation of the last weekend.
This broad sweep is stepped in in a context of terrorist threat max France. “Only for the month of November, the services of counter-terrorism process
in the arrest of 43 individuals, of which 28 were brought to justice,” stressed the head of State on Friday. According to the minister of the Interior Bernard Cazeneuve, 17 attacks have been thwarted since the beginning of the year, seven in 2015.