Trial opens in Copenhagen shooting case; four face terrorism charges

Four men went on trial Thursday in Copenhagen charged with terrorism for aiding a gunman who carried out deadly attacks there a year ago.The terrorism charges are linked to the second of two 2015 attacks, in which Omar el-Hussein killed a young Jewish man at the Danish capital's main synagogue on February 15, 2015. Two police officers were also injured.

El-Hussein was later shot dead by police outside his apartment in the city.

Security was tight at Copenhagen District Court, broadcaster TV2 reported.

Chief Prosecutor Bo Bjerregaard told TV2 shortly before the trial got under way that evidence included security camera footage and records of internet searches and telephone calls.

The men, aged 20 to 31, whose names were shielded, have denied the charges.

The four were accused of aiding el-Hussein in various ways, including: giving him ammunition for handguns; helping him get a hoodie and a bag; and paying a bill at an internet cafe where he conducted a search about the synagogue, the charge sheet said.

Two of them also allegedly helped dispose of an automatic rifle used by el-Hussein in a first shooting on February 14, 2015, when a Danish filmmaker was killed at a freedom of speech event in Copenhagen. The event was also attended by controversial Swedish artist Lars Vilks, who has received death threats for satirizing the Prophet Mohammed in cartoons.

The men have denied charges of being accessories to murder and attempted murder.

They face life imprisonment if convicted of terrorism. The trial was expected to run for 30 days. Sentencing is due in September.

A fifth suspect was released in January after being detained for almost a year. He was not charged with terrorism.

Last update: Thu, 10/03/2016 - 10:59

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