Suspect convicted for threats, cleared in Amsterdam Pride terror plot
A 32-year-old man from Amsterdam who was arrested last August on suspicion of preparing to commit a terrorist attack targeting the city's Pride Parade was sentenced to five months in prison and mandatory psychiatric treatment for making threats. The man was not found guilty of actually planning a terrorist attack.
Behavioral experts who examined Tahsin E. found that he suffers from an autistic disorder and is not fully responsible for his actions. The court was also not convinced that Tahsin E. actually had a terrorist motive of terrorism when he made threats against the Pride event that was supposed to take place last year. He also made threats against Jewish people and police officers.
The man was arrested on August 7 last year after the police received reports from the intelligence and security service AIVD and the American FBI. Telephones, hydrogen peroxide, and syringes were then confiscated at his home.
According to the Public Prosecution Service (OM), prior to that, he searched online for information about chemicals that can be used to make explosives. On Twitter, he asked if anyone had an AK-47 for sale because he "needed it for the Gay Pride Parade". The man also spoke about the explosives he planned to make on a group chat platform Discord.
The Prosecutor believes that Tahsin E. also wanted to target Jewish people and the police. On social media, he commented "Jew spotted" on a clip of a video game showing someone getting shot.
The suspect himself has denied being radicalized or supporting any extremist groups. He explained that he used social media to provoke people and express frustrations.
The OM had asked the court to convict the man and sentence him to between eight and nine months behind bars, in addition to mandatory psychiatric institutionalization.
Pride Amsterdam was scheduled from July 25 to August 2 last year but was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. A demonstration against anti-LGBTQ violence on Museumplein which was supposed to replace the regular boat parade was later also canceled overcrowding fears.