Five days before the first round of the French presidential election, the security services thwarted a planned attack.
Two men were arrested in Marseille. Two men known for their radicalization. And one of them has links with Belgium.
It was the public prosecutor of the Republic of Paris, François Molins, who announced it at his press conference last night. The youngest suspect, Clément Baur, 22, had links with a Belgian jihadist cell, probably that of Verviers. He was allegedly radicalized at the age of 14 by a Chechen preacher. This man would also have tried to win Syria without success.
He was arrested in 2015 in France and spent four months in prison for identity theft. According to the Parisian , the young man is also imprisoned under the name of Ismail Djadrailov, a false name with a Chechen consonance that he uses on the internet. He also had an identity card under his name.
It was there that he would have met the other suspect, Mahiedine Merabet, 29 years old. When he leaves prison he goes to Belgium and moves to Verviers, but the Belgian authorities have it quickly in the viewfinder.
The federal prosecutor’s office indicates that Clément Baur was “reported for hearing”: he had to be heard by the courts.
But by the end of 2015, the suspect disappears from radar screens. According to our information, he may have traveled to Germany. Nothing indicates with certainty that he would have visited Syria, said the French prosecutor’s office.
Both men were ready to take action
In any case, the two men were preparing for ” violent action, imminently on French territory, without being able to determine precisely the day, the target (s) targeted, ” said the prosecutor Paris François Molins.
Police seized three kilograms of TATP, an artisanal explosive prized by jihadists, an artisanal grenade, several firearms, including a machine gun, ammunition bags and a flag of the Islamic State Organization (EI) The apartment occupied by the two men in Marseilles.
Security officials from several presidential candidates were warned last week of the dangerousness of the two men.
The federal prosecutor’s office, an investigating judge specialized in terrorism in Liège and the federal judicial police in Liège have actively collaborated in recent days with the French judicial authorities in search of Clement Baur.