Stockholm truck attacker Rakhmat Akilov pleads guilty to terror charges
(3 months ago)
Stockholm [Sweden], Feb 13 : An Uzbek asylum seeker who confessed to wanting to mow down infidels in last year's Stockholm truck attack that killed five people has pleaded guilty to terrorism charges as his trial opened.
Rakhmat Akilov appeared in the Stockholm courtroom, handcuffed amid tight security, wearing green prison clothes and with a shaved head and a beard, accompanied by his lawyer Johan Eriksson, several media reports stated.
Akilov, whose Swedish asylum application had been rejected in 2016, had sworn allegiance to the Islamic State (IS) on the eve of his assault in one of Europe's safest cities, though the jihadist group never claimed responsibility.
Akilov, who arrived in Sweden in 2014 and went underground after his request to stay in the country was rejected, was arrested in Marsta north of Stockholm hours after the attack.
The 39-year-old suspect had previously admitted to carrying out the fatal attack and had been remanded in pre-trial detention since the incident.
On the afternoon of Friday 7 April last, A hijacked beer truck rammed into the upscale Ahlens department store on the busy Drottninggatan street, a major pedestrianized shopping area in the center of the city and above the city's main railway station, according to the reports.
He killed five and injured ten before fleeing the scene.