Danish police release suspected helper from Copenhagen shooting

A man who has been in Danish detention for nearly a year because of suspicion he provided aid to a gunman who went on to carry out deadly attacks in Copenhagen in February was set free by police Thursday, but remains a suspect.

The 19-year-old was one of five men detained. According to media reports, he is being investigated on suspicion he helped Omar el-Hussein acquire a bulletproof vest and at least one knife before el-Hussein went on two attacks in two days that left two people dead in February.

The man released Thursday has been in custody since February 28. He was one of five who have been arrested in the case. Media report the other men are under investigation for helping el-Hussein acquire a gun or for sheltering him.

The men have denied charges of being accessories to murder and attempted murder. A decision on charges against the five men is likely in a few weeks, chief prosecutor Karin Degnboel Thorstrup said Thursday.

Last week, a judge extended their custody after a closed-door hearing. Prosecutors last month said they hoped a trial could open in March.

A Danish filmmaker was killed by el-Hussein in a February 14 shooting at a freedom of speech event in Copenhagen. Also in attendance was controversial Swedish artist Lars Vilks, who has received death threats for satirizing the Prophet Mohammed in cartoons. El-Hussein killed a young Jewish man at the Danish capital's main synagogue the following day. He was then shot dead by police outside his apartment in the city. Five police officers were injured in the shootings.

Last update: Thu, 21/01/2016 - 17:19

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