Crime & Justice

Suspect arrested in Spain over letter bombs sent to PM, embassies

(Update 1: Adds detail throughout)

Vitoria/Burgos, Spain, Jan 25 (EFE).- A 74-year-old man was arrested in Spain Wednesday for allegedly sending letter bombs to prime minister Pedro Sánchez, the Ukraine and United States embassies as well as other top officials, police said.

According to police sources, the man was detained in Miranda del Ebro, in the northern province of Burgos, and is the only suspect linked to the shipments that took place between November and December 2022.

Police said the suspect, whose identity was limited to his initials P.G.P, was apprehended at 10 am in the middle of the street and is a former civil servant who worked at the city council of Vitoria-Gasteiz, the capital of the Basque region in northern Spain.

Spain’s interior ministry confirmed the arrest and said that investigators were searching the suspect’s home. A first court hearing has been slated for Friday, January 27.

A neighbor of P.G.P — who retired in 2013, as confirmed by the Vitoria-Gasteiz City Council — told Efe that he lived alone in an apartment located on Clavel de Miranda de Ebro street, in the La Charca neighborhood.

Another neighbor, who lives in the adjacent building to the suspect, said that he saw “all the commotion” early Wednesday when he was putting the garbage out.

“The street was full of policemen, it looked like an army,” he said.

The same resident added that he later saw police officers leave the premises with several bags and computer equipment.

The suspect has been accused of allegedly sending six envelopes containing a homemade pyrotechnic material similar to gunpowder.

At least four of the envelopes had the same handwriting and investigators are working on the assumption there is only one person involved.

The first letter bomb, sent to the office of prime minister Sánchez, was intercepted by the authorities on November 24 but not made public until a week later, when another letter containing explosives injured an employee when it detonated at the Ukrainian embassy in the Spanish capital.

On December 1, Spain’s interior ministry reported that four other letter bombs had been sent to the Spanish defense minister Margarita Robles, the American embassy in Madrid, the European Union Satellite Center in Torrejon de Ardoz and an arms manufacturer in the city of Zaragoza.EFE


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