German Court Arrests Russian Suspect in Borussia Football Team Bus Bombing
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 23, 2017,
Apr 23, 2017, 8:29
German police arrested a man on Friday suspected of detonating three bombs that targeted the Borussia Dortmund soccer team bus in the hope of forcing down the club's share price and making a profit on an investment, prosecutors said.
According to the Independent, the 28-year-old man, named only as Sergej W, had bought a put option on Borussia Dortmund's shares on the day of the attack, giving him the right to sell the shares for a specified price at a predetermined date.
Initially the stock did fall in value following the attack, but only 12 cents a share - before rebounding the following day.
Chief Executive of the Borussia Dortmund, Hans-Joachim Watzke, said that the club would be improving the security of its team, adding that they were considering bringing in measures to restrict the trading of its shares.
Initial investigations focused on letters claiming responsibility for the attack that were found close to the site of the blasts, which claimed the attack was carried out "in the name of Allah", broadcaster ARD reported, citing other news media.
Three remotely triggered explosive devices packed with metal pieces went off alongside the team bus on 11 April, minutes after it left the squad's hotel for a Champions League quarter-final match against Monaco.
The suspect had first booked a room at L'Arrivée hotel, where the Dortmund team typically stays for home matches, in mid-March.
"According to prosecutors, the man placed three bombs in a hedge on the road that the team bus was due to take to the stadium". He had bought 15,000 so-called put options on the team's shares on the day of the attack, prosecutors said.
The suspect has been charged with attempted murder, causing an explosion and aggravated battery and severe bodily harm.
North Rhine-Westphalia state interior minister Ralf Jäger said the suspect "appears to have wanted to commit murder out of greed".
The blast shattered the bus windows, and Spanish worldwide Marc Bartra, 26, broke his wrist. A police officer accompanying the bus also suffered trauma from the blast.
She said investigators believe W. acted alone - there are "no indications of possible helpers" - but would continue to probe the possibility he had accomplices.
The club thanked authorities in a statement.
The serious injury or death of any of the soccer players could have resulted in such a slump, it said.
Tuchel said that he personally had come to terms well with the attack but was reluctant to speak for his players and staff. But experts said the letter's mix of correct, complicated German and obvious mistakes suggested it was a red herring, as were two subsequent claims pointing to left-wing and right-wing extremists.