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Finnish court identifies Turku stabbing suspect


People bring candles and flowers to the makeshift memorial for the victims of the stabbings at the Turku Market Square, Finland on August 20, 2017. Two people were killed and six were injured in a stabbing spree in the Finnish city of Turku on August 18, 2017, police said, after officers shot one suspect and warned several others could still be at large. / AFP PHOTO / Lehtikuva / Vesa Moilanen / Finland OUT

Court documents on Monday identified the suspect in last week’s stabbing spree in a Finnish city — being probed as the country’s first ever terror attack — as 18-year-old Abderrahman Mechkah.

Police have previously described the suspect as an asylum seeker from Morocco who deliberately “targeted women” in the attack in a market square in the southwestern port of Turku on Friday, which left two people dead.

The Turku district court documents did not specify Mechkah’s nationality.

Mechkah, whom police shot in the thigh when they arrested him minutes after the rampage, is to appear before the court on Tuesday via video link, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) said.

His court appearance had initially been scheduled for Monday.

Police will ask the court to remand him in custody suspected of two murders and eight attempted murders “with terrorist intent”.

Police will also request the detention of four other Moroccan citizens, who were arrested in an overnight raid on a Turku apartment building and refugee housing centre just hours after the attack.

“They are suspected of participation in the murders and attempted murders committed with a terrorist intent. They deny any involvement in the offences,” the NBI said in a statement.

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