Afghan youth arrested over possible role in Ali Sonboly’s Munich killings
Police have arrested 16-year-old friend of Ali Sonboly as a potential accomplice to the killing of nine people in Munich
24 July 2016 • 9:43pm
German police arrested a 16-year-old Afghan youth on Sunday on suspicion of a connection to the killing of nine people by an 18-year-old gunman in Munich, authorities said.
The youth was under investigation for possibly having failed to report the plans of the gunman, who later shot himself, and may have played a role in a Facebook posting that invited people to the scene of the shooting, a police statement said.
“There is a suspicion that the 16-year-old is a possible tacit accomplice to (Friday’s) attack,” the police said.
Police earlier said the gunman, Ali Sonboly, was a deranged Iranian-German who was fixated with mass killings but not inspired by Islamist militancy.
A woman cries at a make shift memorial site near the Olympia shopping center where the Munich shootings took place Credit: AP
The Afghan youth was taken in for questioning on Sunday after he originally contacted the police on Friday to speak to them but police later found contradictions in his statements.
Investigators also found another Facebook post inviting teenagers to a special free showing at Munich’s largest central cinema complex this weekend. The police went to the cinema but couldn’t find any suspects.
The German tabloid Bild says Sonboly and the Afghan youth knew each other as they were both treated at the psychiatric department of the same clinic.
Reports had earlier indicated that Sonboly had used an alias to post an invitation to his friends to attend a McDonalds where the shooting took place.
In the event, police said that Sonboly did not go to school with any of his young victims, investigators told reporters at a press conference on Sunday. Nor did he appear to target specific people.
However a 20-year-old man told Bild that he was one of the 10 people who went to the restaurant after receiving the invitation from a fake Facebook profile that Sonboly used to pose as an attractive girl.
The man, who was not named, said: ‘I met Ali at 4 o’clock on the first floor of the McDonald’s. He was wearing black jeans and a T-shirt, and sitting with an empty tray talking to himself. His red backpack was beside him.
‘He also invited an Albanian boy who had bullied him at school. He came too, but we left as we did not see the girl who had invited us.
‘I went because I was hungry. In the end I was running for my life.’