Man who sparked Rotterdam train scare won't be charged

21st September 2015, Comments 0 comments

A man who triggered a police standoff at Rotterdam station after locking himself inside a train toilet was likely just a fare-dodger and will not face charges, officials said Monday.

The young man, thought to be of Tunisian origin, "is no longer suspected of doing anything that would merit a jail term," Rotterdam prosecutors said in a statement.

Rotterdam station was evacuated Friday when the man rushed onto an international Thalys train heading from Amsterdam to Paris and locked himself inside the bathroom.

He was apparently trying to reach the French capital without paying.

Although police had said Saturday he seemed to be 16 years old, prosecution spokesman Jeichien de Graaf told AFP the authorities had still not been able to determine who he was.

"He had no identity papers and he is known in Europe under nine different identities," she said, adding the man was now being held by immigration authorities.

"He's most likely Tunisian, and has probably been living a bit of a nomadic life for several years in western European countries."

Friday's incident on the Amsterdam-to-Paris train came less than a month after a suspected jihadist opened fire on a Thalys train plying the same route, injuring two people.

The gunman armed with a Kalashnikov had opened fire on the high-speed train on August 21, carrying more than 550 passengers -- but was swiftly overpowered by several passengers including off-duty American servicemen.

© 2015 AFP

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