Wednesday 18 October 2017

'Goth' game player planned Majorca student massacre

Fiona Govan Madrid

Spanish police have arrested a student who was planning to stage a "Columbine-style" massacre at a university in Majorca.

The 21-year-old student, named locally as Juan Manuel Morales Sierra, was arrested on Wednesday with more than 300lb of explosives he had ordered over the internet.

Police said he had boasted of wanting to "do a Columbine" and expressed admiration for the perpetrators of the 1999 US attack that killed 12 students and a teacher. They believe he had tried, and failed, in several attempts to purchase guns before planning an attack using pipe bombs at the University of the Balearic Isles (UIB) in Palma de Majorca.

The arrest was made as he received a delivery of explosives at his home in the island's capital. Mr Morales, an electronics student, had been under surveillance by detectives for five months after he was identified as a risk through posts he had made on an internet blog.

"We have arrested a Columbine massacre imitator who wanted to litter the UIB with bombs," said a statement issued by Spain's National Police force.

"In his personal blog and in documents seized from his home, the detainee spoke of his hate towards society, particularly university students, and of his decision to place shrapnel pipe bombs around campus," it continued. He also "contemplated the possibility of suicide in the aftermath of the massacre".

A spokesman added that there was no indication that he was acting through any "set ideological reasons".

The student was described locally as a "loner" who adopted a "goth" style, dressing in dark-coloured clothing, and was obsessed with computer games and weapons.

He reportedly moved out of his family home a few months ago and lived alone in a small flat in Palma where he earned money playing online poker. ( © Daily Telegraph, London)

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