The Prague Prosecutor’s Office has accused a 70-year-old Czech man of committing two terrorist attacks by felling trees on railway tracks, causing train collisions, and then spreading fake leaflets attributing the attacks to jihadists to stoke anti-Muslim sentiment in the country.
Prosecutors in the Czech Republic told local media that the pensioner chopped down trees so they would fall over the railway tracks near Mlada Boleslav, a small city around 40 miles north of the country’s capital, Prague.
“The prosecution is dealing with the destruction of trees on the railway line in the area of Mlade Boleslava, as well as the spread of threatening leaflets pretending to be jihadists and planning attacks on the citizens of the Czech Republic,” Prosecutor Martin Bili said on Monday, according to Czech media.
The man, who is currently on remand, faces life in prison if found guilty of causing the collisions, which occurred in June and July last year, causing no injuries.
“The accused is a native Czech citizen, motivated by the effort to raise concerns among the population about the Muslim migration wave and the commission of terrorist attacks,” prosecutor Marek Bodlak said after the arrest.
The first incident occurred on 1 June 2017 on the line between Bakov nad Jizerou and Mladá Boleslav, and was quickly picked up on anti-Muslim activists, who reported on Facebook that messages in Arabic had been found at the scene. The Czech Police later confirmed that rumor.
A piece of paper with an incorrectly spelled inscription of “Allah is great” on it had been found at the scene.
The second train crash happened on 28 July on the line between Bělá pod Bezdězem and Bezděz.
According to Czech media reports, the unnamed man was a fanatical supporter of the radial nationalist opposition Freedom Party, which rails against Islam and wants to end all Muslim immigration to the country.