Germany: Islamist sent to prison for planning biological bomb attack

German court sentences Tunisian ISIS supporter to 10 years in prison for planning attack with deadly poison ricin.

Elad Benari ,

German police
German police
iStock

A German court on Thursday sentenced a 31-year-old Tunisian to 10 years in prison for planning a biological bomb attack with the deadly poison ricin, AFP reports.

Islamic State (ISIS) sympathizer Sief Allah H., 31, had ordered castor seeds, explosives and metal ball bearings on the internet in order to build the toxic bomb, a spokesman for the higher regional court in Duesseldorf said.

He was found guilty of producing a biological weapon and of planning a serious act of violent subversion.

His German wife Yasmin, 43, is accused of helping him build the bomb but she is now being tried separately after the court accused her defense lawyers of attempting to spin out the case with a 140-page statement on Thursday.

Her trial will resume on April 1, reported AFP.

The couple "wanted to create a climate of fear and uncertainty among the German population," judge Jan van Lessen was quoted by DPA as saying on Thursday.

He added that they had produced enough ricin to potentially kill up to 13,500 people.

The couple have been on trial since June last year following their arrest in 2018 by an anti-terrorist squad that found 84 milligrams of the toxin in their Cologne apartment.

The arrests likely prevented what would have been Germany's first biological attack, said Holger Muench, head of the BKA Federal Criminal Police Office, at the time.

Federal prosecutors said the couple had "for a long time identified with the aims and values of the foreign terrorist organization Islamic State".

They decided in 2017 to detonate an explosive in a large crowd, "to kill and wound the largest possible number of people," prosecutors said ahead of the trial.

Sief Allah H. admitted to building the bomb but denied that he had planned an attack on German soil.

Germany has been on a high level of alert due to a series of terrorist attacks in the country in recent years.

In one attack, a 17-year-old Afghani with an axe attacked passengers on a train in Wurzburg before being shot dead by security forces.

In a second incident, an attacker set off a bomb in a restaurant in Ansbach, killing himself and wounding 12 others.

The worst such attack took place in December of 2016, when Tunisian terrorist Anis Amri killed 12 people and injured dozens more when he drove a truck into a Christmas market in Berlin.




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