Home of German-Afghan stormed after routine luggage check at train station found suitcase full of machetes

The suspect was known to authorities as an Islamist threat and police have not ruled out the possibility the 20-year-old was on his way to carry out a terror attack

editor: REMIX NEWS
author: Thomas Brooke

A German national of Afghan origin was arrested on Saturday evening at Hamburg Central Station after a luggage check found the suspect in possession of a suitcase full of weapons including machetes, knives, and a hatchet.

Scissors and a retractable baton were also discovered in his belongings.

The man was detained following a routine inspection carried out at around 11:15 p.m., a police spokesman confirmed. Hamburg Central Station had been a location targeted by authorities for on-the-spot checks for weapons over the weekend with 120 on-duty police officers carrying out more than 650 checks on unassuming passengers.

A total of 14 individuals were found to have been in violation of the no-weapons policy.

The suspect was reportedly known to the authorities and is considered an Islamist threat, according to Germany’s Bild newspaper. The 20-year-old remains in custody as a wider investigation into the matter is conducted by the State Criminal Police Office.

Authorities have not ruled out that the suspect, named by Bild as Hafez A., was on his way to carry out an attack. The Hamburg station connects to the city’s underground and S-Bahn, the city’s suburban commuter railway network, which also connects to long-distance trains.

Armed federal police stormed the suspect’s home in Hamburg-Hausbruch at 5 a.m. on Sunday morning after the discovery. Police equipped with machine guns surrounded the apartment and secured the perimeter.

A number of USB sticks and hard drives were recovered from the apartment located 18 kilometers from the main train station, all of which are currently being evaluated by IT police staff.

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