Motive behind van attack in Germany still a mystery

Motive behind van attack in Germany still a mystery

He was a Munster resident and apparently well off.

Investigators named the victims as a 51-year-old woman from the Lueneburg area in northern Germany and a 65-year-old man from the Borken area near Muenster.

Authorities have said there is no indication it is an Islamist attack. "But he was well known to the police". What makes this story take a freakish turn is that the driver of the vehicle shot and killed himself inside it. Muenster prosecutor Elke Adomeit told reporters on Sunday that there had been three court hearings involving the deceased van driver in the city, as well as one in the town of Arnsberg, in 2015 and 2016, Die Welt reported.

A German prosecutor said the man had run-ins with police regarding property damage, fraud and a hit-and-run, but all charges were dismissed each time.

German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung has reported on its online portal that the perpetrator was Jens R., 48, who lived around 2 km from the scene of the crime. Their names weren't given as is customary in Germany. The silver-grey van was hauled away hours later, after explosives experts had thoroughly checked it.

Police said they have found a deactivated Kalashnikov assault rifle and party firecrackers at the house of the attacker in Munster.

Inside the apartment where the man was living, which was near the crash scene, police found more firecrackers and a "no-longer usable AK-47 machine gun".

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Police and prosecutors said because of the Muenster attack, they chose to mount raids on the suspects who are aged between 18 and 21.

Muenster is located in north-west Germany, and is home to around 300,000 people.

Muenster's Roman Catholic bishop is urging mourners to try to understand - with the help of God - the terrible van crash that killed two people and injured 20 others.

Ambulances stand in downtown Muenster, Germany, Saturday, April 7, 2018.

In the attack on Saturday afternoon the man ploughed the vehicle into people seated at tables outside the Grosser Kiepenkerl eatery, a popular destination for tourists in the university city's old town.

The German news agency dpa is quoting police as saying that that the driver who crashed his van into a crowd in the western German city of Muenster had no accomplices.

Earlier on Sunday, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said the government would do everything possible to protect citizens, but added: "We have again experienced that. absolute security is unfortunately not possible".

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