Spain detains man for selling Islamic State clothing line
Spanish police have detained a man suspected of selling clothes bearing Islamic State slogans and T-shirts showing a British aid worker just before his execution, the government said Wednesday.
The man, a Spanish citizen whose name was not released, sold the items online to customers across Spain and neighbouring Portugal as well as at a shop he owned, an interior ministry statement said.
He was arrested on Tuesday in the town of Naron in northwestern Spain following a joint operation by Spain’s intelligence agency and police.
Pictures released by the ministry showed a range of items the man was selling, including tote bags, shorts, sweatshirts, baby clothes and T-shirts bearing slogans in Arabic of Islamic State or another group, Harakat Sham al-Islam.
There were also sweatshirts and T-shirts bearing an image of British hostage Alan Henning dressed in orange and kneeling beside his masked executioner and the Islamic State flag. These were sold for between 14-16 euros ($15.5-17.6).
Henning, a 47-year-old taxi driver and father of two who went to Syria as a volunteer to deliver aid, was beheaded by Islamic State militants last year.
His widow Barbara has urged Google to remove images and videos of her husband’s beheading removed from the Internet.
The interior ministry said the man also used Facebook and other Internet social networks to spread “the ideology of jihadist terrorist organisations.”
He faces charges of inciting terrorist acts, glorifying terrorism and humiliating victims of terrorism.
“It is an important arrest because in this battle against jihadist terrorism I would say that the main front at the moment is the Internet,” the director general of Spanish police, Ignacio Cosido, told reporters.
Police seized computer equipment and documents from the man’s home and store. The investigation is ongoing.