PARIS: The focus in the investigation into the latest Paris attack, which claimed the life of a police officer and left two others wounded late on Thursday, is turning towards the identity of the attacker.
ISIL have already claimed him as one of their own, using his military pseudonym, but the 39-year-old was known to French police under another name and was being watched.
This man was known to be highly dangerous since a car chase and gun battle with police in 2001 led to a 15-year sentence in 2005 on three counts of attempted murder of police officers.
“The identity of the attacker is known, it has been verified. I will not give it to you as investigations and searches are already taking place to determine whether or not he was making use of accomplices,” said Paris prosecutor Francois Molins.
Police are searching the attacker’s house in Chelles, an outer eastern Parisian district, from where he took his own car, used in the attack, along with an assault rifle.
“Solitary. Very solitary. Perhaps (he had) schizophrenia, I don’t know. But in any case, the guy was very solitary and he treated everyone properly. So to do this it means he lost his mind,” said a neighbour.
France 2 television reported the man had recently been released due to lack of evidence after being suspected of trying to buy firearms.__EuroNews