8 held in Franco-Swiss anti-terrorism raids
12 Nov 2017, 02:09 ( 6 days ago) | updated: 12 Nov 2017, 02:11 ( 6 days ago)
Eight individuals arrested earlier this week, in a joint Franco-Swiss anti-terrorism operation, have been placed under formal investigation on charge of criminal terrorist conspiracy, state-run radio France info reported on Saturday.
In total, ten suspects, aged between 18 and 65, were arrested in the Fronco-Swiss anti-terrorism raid on Nov. 7, with nine of them arrested in French regions of Alpes- Maritimes, Saint-Denis and Val de Marne and one in Switzerland.
Some of these suspects, including several converted to Islam, have been already on police watchlist for radicalization. They were facing terrorism charges for planning attacks, according to the report.
Seven of the eight individuals have been held in pre-trial detention and the other one was put on probation. A ninth suspect was released without charge, while the tenth, a 23-year-old Colombian girl arrested in Switzerland, has been remanded in custody for three months.
Speaking to lawmakers on Wednesday, French Interior Minister Gerard Collomb said the suspects were "mostly young people who had been indoctrinated by a so-called imam" who was among the detainees.
Collomb added they "planned attacks without having really determined the target."
Local media reported that they planned an assault in southern city of Nice, where a truck driver rammed into a crowd on July 14, 2016, killing 86 people.
French police have foiled 11 terrorist assaults during the January-September period this year, according to official data.
Over the past two years, a wave of attacks occurred in France with the last assault leaving two victims dead when a man stabbed to death two young women at a railway station in Marseille in southeastern France on Oct. 1.
The Islamic State (IS) claimed responsibility for the attack.