• Austria's news in English

Austrian teen jihadist jailed for bomb plot

The Local/AFP · 26 May 2015, 11:40

Published: 26 May 2015 11:40 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

He was also found guilty of belonging to a "terrorist" organization and given an additional suspended jail sentence of 16 months by a court in his hometown of Sankt-Pölten.

The Austrian teenager of Turkish origin, named only as Mertan G., was arrested in his home last October after he began enquiring online about buying bomb parts. 

According to prosecutors, the jihadist teenager was planning to carry out an attack on Vienna's Westbahnof train station and had made contact online with terrorist networks including Isis and al-Qaeda. 

He intended to join "holy war" in Syria alongside Isis after carrying out the attack, the charge sheet said. 

After his initial arrest the boy was released from custody in November but then arrested again in January after he went into hiding and violated the parole conditions. He was picked up in Vienna and has since been kept in pre-trial detention until appearing in court in Sankt Pölten for his trial.

The boy's lawyer, Rudolf Mayer, said his client had "come to understand that he had succumbed to good propaganda".

The teenager's legal defence said the boy had turned to religion following problems in his private life.

His lawyer said: "He wanted to be deeply religious, and then as a teenager came across pages on the internet that claimed to represent the only true religion.”

Mayer, who became well-known after representing Josef Fritzl in 2009, added that the teen believed that through religion he could do something good, "namely to defeat the unbelievers and fight".

Police had said at the time of his arrest in October 2014 that the boy made "concrete enquiries about buying ingredients" for a bomb and "planned to explode the devices in public places, such as the Vienna Westbahnhof," a major train station.

Unconfirmed press reports said Isis had offered to pay him 25,000 euros ($27,250) if he managed to carry out the attack.

Story continues below…

In common with other European countries, Austria has seen a steady flow of people leaving or attempting to leave the country in order to join Isis militants in Syria and Iraq.

According to the Austrian interior ministry, more than 200 have done so, including some women and minors. Around 70 have since returned, several of whom are in custody awaiting trial.

For more news from Austria, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local/AFP (news.austria@thelocal.com)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Verdict on swimming pool rape case overturned
The Theresienbad swimming pool in Vienna. Photo: Wikimedia

An Iraqi refugee who was jailed after claiming it was a sexual emergency when he raped a boy in a swimming pool has had the sentence overturned.

Vienna Comic Con promises to be 'bigger and more galactic'
Cosplay star Yaya Han. Copyright: Yaya Han/Bryan Humphrey

Comic Con returns to the Austrian capital on November 19th-20th at the Messe Wien.

Three refugees arrested on drugs charges
Cannabis plants. Photo: J. Patrick Bedell/Wikimedia

A gang of three Afghani drug dealers has been busted in Vienna.

Hungarian woman crushed by snowcat piste machine
Snowcat machine. Photo: Melensdad/Wikimedia

A young Hungarian woman has died after being crushed by a snowcat piste machine on the Dobratsch mountain in Carinthia.

Austrian policeman sentenced over 'Heil Hitler' salute
Photo: Flickr

A policeman in Austria was sentenced on Thursday for shouting "Heil Hitler" at a driver during a traffic check at the Hungarian border in April.

Scary clown craze endangers crucial work of clown 'doctors'
Photo: Bojan Tavcar

Within the last couple weeks, disturbing events involving masked individuals has caught public attention in Austria.

Chimney sweep rescues lost mushroom picker
Photo: James Lindsey/Wikimedia

A 76-year-old Austrian man who went out mushroom picking almost froze to death after getting lost and spending the night in the forest.

Refugees sold into forced prostitution
File photo: UNHCR

Female refugees are being sold into forced prostitution in Austria, a police investigation into human trafficking has found.

Driverless bus takes a spin around Salzburg's old town
The Arma driverless shuttle bus. Photo: Navya

A driverless minibus has made a test journey in the city of Salzburg.

No jail time for asylum seeker who dumped baby in road
Photo: Paul Gillingwater

A man who grabbed his own child and dumped her in the middle of a busy road has been given a nine-month suspended sentence.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 brilliant German words you won't find in English
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Five films which will change your mind about Austrian cinema
Those surprising Austrians!
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
100 years since the last emperor's death
Afghani family's new home in Austria
Der you learn Deutsch?
Delighted by the light
Beware these passport scams
Of course we skipped Oarsch
Foodies rejoice at the choice!
Travel & Tourism
10 years after her escape from captivity
Surviving the Brexit for British expats
Day 2 of the World Bodypainting Festival 2016
Is Islam hostile to Western society?
Bodypainting festival in southern Austria
Europe's ice cream capital
Best Austrian beauty spots
Travel & Tourism
Three days in Vienna as a tourist
How to make friends in Austria
jobs available