Sweden auto fires suspect arrested in Turkey

Elias Hubbard
August 17, 2018

Masked youths have torched dozens of cars in Sweden and thrown rocks at police, prompting an angry response from the prime minister.

Cars set ablaze is common in Sweden.

Up to 80 cars were set on fire overnight across western Sweden by masked vandals, police said Tuesday, in what they suspect was a coordinated attack weeks before a general election. They also threw rocks at police. Lippens said that because the fires started within a short period of time, "we can not exclude that there is a connection between the blazes".

"As of now we have no motive whatsoever", police spokesman Christer Fuxborg told The Associated Press.

The arsonists dressed like the left-wing radical group Antifa and used social media to coordinate the attack.

The violence echoed rioting by hundreds of youths in Stockholm and some of its poorer suburbs in 2013, sparked by the police killing of a 69-year-old man wielding a machete in a suburb of the capital, which prompted accusations of police brutality.

"We have spoken with them but we can not conclude they started the fires".

"After some intense investigating we actually found out he was on his way to Turkey, so we contacted the police in Turkey and told them that we would like to have this man back for investigation", Brehm said.

Two others, aged 16 and 21 and living in Frolunda, a suburb of Gothenburg where of some the fires took place, were arrested on Tuesday on suspicion of arson. More suspects likely could be detained.

Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said on Swedish radio that the fires appeared to be "very organized, nearly like a military operation".

In an interview on Swedish radio, he said he was "really getting mad" and that "the society must react in a tough manner". He said the fires seemed to be "extremely organized". No injuries were reported, but photos show that many cars were destroyed.

"You're ruining things for yourselves, your parents and your neighbourhoods", Lofven said, adding the incident "looked very coordinated, nearly like a military operation".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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