Wednesday 16 October 2019

Three suspects arrested over Lyon bomb attack

A manhunt was launched after a device exploded on a pedestrian street on Friday night.

Soldiers at the scene in Lyon (Sebastien Erome/AP)
Soldiers at the scene in Lyon (Sebastien Erome/AP)

By Associated Press Reporters

French police have arrested three suspects following a blast in Lyon that injured 13 people last week.

Interior Minister Christophe Castaner announced the first arrest on Twitter.

The prosecutors’ office later said two other suspects, including a woman, had been detained.

Lyon mayor Gerard Collomb, a former interior minister, said one of the suspects is an IT student who was arrested as he stepped off a bus.

“It’s a relief for all Lyon inhabitants. I believe the case has been resolved,” Mr Collomb told BFM TV. “If there was a network, it has been identified and will certainly be dismantled.”

Police had launched a large manhunt after a device exploded on Friday on a busy pedestrian street in the central city. Regional authorities said the 13 wounded suffered mostly minor injuries.

ipanews_5a75d648-0c70-42fe-87b1-890990bd3147_embedded243099685
Scene of the blast (Sebastien Erome/AP)

President Emmanuel Macron called the explosion an “attack” but no group has claimed responsibility for the explosion.

An investigation has been opened for “attempted murder in relation with a terrorist undertaking”.

Last week, France’s counter-terrorism prosecutor, Remy Heitz, described video surveillance that showed a suspect heading toward the centre of Lyon on a bicycle. The man was seen arriving on foot, pushing his bike along a pedestrian-only street, then leaving a paper bag on a concrete block in the middle of the street near a bakery.

The suspect immediately returned to his bike and left by the same path. One minute later, the explosion shattered the glass of a refrigerator in the bakery, Mr Heitz said.

It was unclear whether the suspect arrested on Monday was the same person, although Mr Collomb said the detained student was identified thanks to video surveillance.

Investigators at the scene have found screws, ball bearings, batteries, a triggering device that can be used remotely and plastic pieces that may have come from the explosive device.

France has been hit by a spate of attacks in recent years, some of them deadly, carried out by people ranging from extremist attackers to mentally unstable individuals.

PA Media

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Editors Choice

Also in World News