German soccer bomb suspect wanted to profit on stocks - prosecutor

Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:43pm GMT
 

By Maria Sheahan

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German police arrested a man on Friday suspected of detonating three bombs that targeted the Borussia Dortmund soccer team bus in the hope of sending the club's shares plummeting and making a profit on an investment, prosecutors said.

In a statement, the federal chief prosecutor said the 28-year old man, a dual German and Russian national identified as Sergei V., had bought options on Borussia Dortmund's stock before the attack.

The team bus was heading to the club's stadium for a Champions League match against AS Monaco on April 11 when the explosions went off, wounding Spanish defender Marc Bartra and delaying the match by a day.

Prosecutors last week expressed doubts about the authenticity of three letters left at the site of the attack that suggested that Islamist militants had carried it out.

The prosecutor's office said the suspect had bought 15,000 put options - contracts giving him the right to sell Borussia Dortmund's shares at a pre-determined price - on the day of the attack, using a consumer loan he had signed a week earlier.

"If the shares of Borussia Dortmund had fallen massively, the profit would have been several times the initial investment," it said, adding that such a slump could have resulted if any players had been killed or seriously injured.

In fact, the shares rose 1.8 percent on April 12, the day after the attack, and are up about 2 percent so far this year.

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A house were the German police arrested a man who is suspected of planting explosives targeting the bus of soccer team Borussia Dortmund is pictured in the town Rottenburg, Germany April 21, 2017. REUTERS/Michael Dalder
 
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