Court papers have identified the terrorist who killed four people by driving a stolen beer truck down a busy Stockholm shopping street as an Uzbek who had been ordered to leave the country.
Four people were killed — two Swedes, a Belgian woman and a British man — and 15 injured after an attacker drove a truck down Drottninggatan street Friday afternoon, sending pedestrians diving into shops for cover before the truck plowed into the Åhlens City department store. The Spendrups brewery truck had been stolen earlier in the day, the company said; witnesses said the driver didn’t seem experienced behind the wheel of the truck.
The city’s subway and bus system was temporarily shut down and Prime Minister Stefan Löfven ordered tighter border controls.
The suspected driver of the truck, who bailed after the crash but was arrested a short time later, is 39-year-old Rakhmat Akilov.
The Uzbek reportedly applied for Swedish residency, was turned down last year and was under a deportation order issued in December. Police said he was known for extremist sympathies.
He reportedly had a wife and four kids back in Uzbekistan and also recently lost his construction job due to taking nap time on the job. Akilov has been referred to as someone who partied and drank, and reportedly told a former co-worker earlier this year that he was spending his unemployed days “sleeping and smoking.”
On his Facebook page, he posted ISIS videos while being a fan of Playboy.
Swedish media reported that before and after the attack Akilov exchanged WhatsApp messages with ISIS supporters, and those messages were then shared in an ISIS chat forum. Akilov reportedly confessed to police, telling them he “achieved” what he could.
President Trump called Löfven on Sunday “to express condolences to the loved ones of those who were killed in Friday’s terrorist attack in central Stockholm, and to wish a speedy recovery to those who were wounded,” the White House said. “The two leaders agreed to maintain and strengthen the already close partnership between the United States and Sweden in the global fight against terrorism.”