The Polish Internal Security Agency (ABW) has detained a Ukrainian citizen and a Muslim convert after law enforcement suspected he was preparing a terrorist attack on a mall.
The spokeswoman of the Prosecutor’s Office informed that the suspect is Maksym S., a Ukrainian citizen who has been living in Poland for the last two months.
The man had converted to Islam a few weeks ago and took the new name of Muhamat. Security services say it appears he quickly became radicalized and was planning an attack with a car full of explosives on a shopping mall in a city of Puławy, 140 kilometers (93 miles) southeast from Warsaw.
The Ukrainian associated himself with foreigners who preached a radical approach to Islam who came from Tajikistan, Russia and Chechenia, said the spokesman of Stanisław Żaryn, the minister of Poland’s special services.
Żaryn said that according to the investigation, the man was planning to attack the mall using a car trap, explosives and guns.
The suspected terrorist faces a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison.
ABW stated that the suspect had trained himself in the proper usage of materials needed for a terrorist attack and told his co-workers and a number of people close to him about his plans. One of these individuals then informed the police of his plans.
Polish security services also said the man allegedly threatened “non-believers and atheists”, saying that they would be “beaten up by radicals”.