Published: Mon, April 09, 2018
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Muenster van driver well known to German police

Muenster van driver well known to German police

His run-ins with the law regarded threats, property damage, fraud and a hit-and-run, but Ms Adomeit said all charges were dismissed.

Authorities have said the man was a German citizen and that there was "no indication of an Islamist background", but investigators have not said what motivated the attack.

Police also identified the two victims killed in the incident as a 51-year-old woman and a 65-year-old man.

Six out of 20 injured people were in critical stage, according to police spokesman Andreas Bode.

Amri's attack in Berlin in 2016 prompted German lawmakers to call for tougher security measures.

The suspect's motive and exact identity still remains unclear, but German media reported he was a national with mental health problems.

Muenster's Roman Catholic bishop is urging mourners to try to understand - with the help of God - the awful van crash that killed two people and injured 20 others.

A witness told German newspaper Bild: "I heard a loud, thumping blow, and suddenly people were yelling "Oh my God".

"There are several dead, probably including the suspect", a police spokeswoman said.

He said, "People are calm, but really shocked", adding that people were scared and disbelieving that such an attack could happen in Muenster.

The incident comes at a time of a heightened concern in Europe, following a spate of jihadist attacks using vehicles to kill pedestrians in the UK, France and Sweden.

Police investigators were still trying to learn the man's motive.

They are investigating "all possible avenues", said the north-western city's senior prosecutor, Martin Botzenhardt.

Inside the apartment where the man was living, which was near the crash scene, police found more firecrackers and a "no-longer usable AK-47 machine gun".

"We are pressing hard on our investigation into all possible avenues".

On the other hand, the Associated Press reported that according to a police spokesperson, media reports on perpetrator having psychological issues too have not been confirmed.

Muenster is a popular tourist destination with 300,000 inhabitants, known for its medieval old town, which was rebuilt after the massive destruction during World War II.

Firefighters of the city of Muenster clean the area in front of the traditional Grosser Kiepenkerl guesthouse where a man drove a van into a group of people sitting outside its restaurant in the old city centre of Muenster, Germany on April 8.

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