Teenager charged with terror offences

Teenager charged with terror offences
Photo: APA (Archiv/epa)
Prosecutors in St Pölten, Lower Austria, have charged a 14-year-old boy with terror offences after he researched how to build a bomb online and made contact with militants supporting Islamic State fighters in Syria.

The teenager, who is from a Turkish family, was detained for a second time in January on suspicion of terrorism-related activity.

He was released from custody in November last year but then ran away and failed to abide by his probation agreement.

Police found him in a fast food restaurant in Vienna after his mother reported him missing. 

He was allegedly planning to travel to Syria and had been plotting a series of bomb attacks at crowded targets such as Vienna’s Westbahnhof railway station. The Islamic State is reported to have offered him money to carry out such a terror attack.

The authorities have based their charges on data found on the boy’s PlayStation games console, including bomb-building plans downloaded from the internet, Michaela Obenaus, a spokeswoman for prosecutors in St Pölten said.

The teenager faces up to five years in jail if convicted of supporting a terrorist organisation and planning an attack.

More than 170 people have left Austria to fight in the Middle East, according to the interior ministry, some of whom have been killed.