Investigators say lieutenant stashed gun at Vienna airport to be used in ‘act of state-threatening violence.’
The unidentified soldier was detained when he went to retrieve a loaded pistol he had hidden in a bathroom at Vienna International Airport.
The public prosecutor’s office in Frankfurt said the 28-year-old is suspected of planning a serious “state-threatening act of violence”, fraud and violating firearms laws.
More than 90 German police officers have worked alongside Austrian and French security forces to search 16 locations across three countries on Wednesday, when a suspected accomplice was arrested in Bavaria.
Investigations have revealed that the Bundeswehr lieutenant was stationed at Illkirch-Graffenstaden in France before registering as a refugee back in Germany.
He gave false information to authorities in Giessen, Hesse, on 30 December 2015 – as Germany was overwhelmed by the arrival of almost a million asylum seekers.
Posing as a Syrian refugee but reportedly speaking in French, rather than Arabic, the man submitted an asylum application at Zirndorf in Bavaria in January last year.
“As a result, he was given shelter in a refugee home and has received monthly financial benefits under this false identity,” the Frankfurt prosecutor’s office said.
“These findings, as well as other evidence, point towards a xenophobic motive for the soldier’s suspected plan to commit an attack using a weapon deposited at Vienna airport.”
A German soldier found posing as a Syrian refugee has been arrested for allegedly planning a “false flag” shooting attack that would be blamed on asylum seekers. The unidentified soldier was detained when he went to retrieve a loaded pistol he had hidden in a bathroom at Vienna International Airport.