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article imageFinland frees sixth stabbing suspect, but alleged attacker held

By AFP     Sep 1, 2017 in World

Finnish police said Friday that they had released a sixth suspect in last month's stabbing spree that killed two and injured eight others in a southwestern city, leaving the alleged attacker as the only person still in custody.

The National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) said the released man "was placed in pre-trial detention on Tuesday last week for possible involvement in two murders with a terrorist intent and eight attempted murders with a terrorist intent."

"There is no longer any reason to suspect him of these offences," it said in a statement.

The main suspect has been identified as Abderrahman Bouanane, a 22-year-old Moroccan national who was shot in the thigh by the police shortly after the stabbings, which are being investigated as Finland's first terror attack.

Investigators said Wednesday that Bouanane was carrying a manifesto at the time of the attack.

"He wrote it before the crime. He had it with him when he was shot," chief investigator Olli Toyras told AFP, without specifying what the manifesto contained.

Bouanane had also recorded a video that included text from the manifesto.

Police have said Bouanane targeted women during his rampage through the market square in Turku, a port city, killing two women and wounding another six, as well as two men who tried to stop him.

But Bouanane's motive is not known and no extremist group has claimed responsibility for the August 18 attack.

Seven people have been arrested since the incident, and the authorities are searching for an eighth suspect, who is the subject of an international arrest warrant. They have not revealed that person's identity.

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