Truck attack suspect admits to terror crime

STOCKHOLM • The suspect in the Stockholm truck attack, 39-year-old Uzbek and terrorist sympathiser Rakhmat Akilov, has admitted to committing a "terrorist crime" by mowing down pedestrians on a busy Stockholm street, killing four people and injuring 15 others.

"Akilov confesses to a terrorist crime and accepts his detention," his lawyer Johan Eriksson told a hearing yesterday.

The construction worker, who was arrested in a Stockholm suburb hours after last Friday's attack, appeared handcuffed and wearing a thick green hoodie over his head. Judge Malou Lindblom ordered him to remove the hoodie and he complied, revealing dark hair with streaks of grey.

The judge consented to the prosecution's request to hold the rest of the hearing behind closed doors, owing to the classified nature of the information in the probe, and remanded Akilov in custody.

Akilov had requested that Mr Eriksson, his state-appointed lawyer, be replaced by a Sunni Muslim. The court refused.

On Sunday, a second suspect - also from Uzbekistan, according to media reports - was arrested, although any link with Akilov has not been revealed.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 12, 2017, with the headline 'Truck attack suspect admits to terror crime'. Print Edition | Subscribe