French train gunman “had been staying in Loulé” before thwarted massacre

The Moroccan terrorist toppled by have-a-go heroes on a French train in August had been staying in Loulé before the attempted massacre, allegedly accompanied by Portuguese jihadi sympathizers.

The news came yesterday (Sunday) as Spanish police confirmed a Portuguese was among 10 terror suspects rounded up in a mega-operation involving Moroccan authorities over the weekend.

Sources close to the investigation have intimated there are more Portuguese involved in what is effectively a jihadist cell “but their whereabouts is unknown”.

“Spain has confirmed that investigations into the network continue,” writes national tabloid Correio da Manhã, suggesting “new arrests” are a possibility.

For now, little has been revealed about the Portuguese national involved.

He is understood to have “accompanied” Moroccan Ayoub el Khazzani who was overpowered on a high-speed train on August 21 in France after emerging from a bathroom carrying an assault rifle.

The Portuguese man was detained in Toledo, explains CM, and is believed to have been part of a recruitment network aimed at indoctrinating women and sending them to ISIS territories in Iraq and Syria.

CM adds that it “knows” that Moroccan Ayoub was in Portugal in July and that he was the subject of investigation by both Spanish and Portuguese secret services.

A SIRP (Portuguese information system) agent “accompanied the vigilance”, CM explained.

Ayoub was in southern Portugal, the paper affirmed, and “came to be photographed near Loulé. He was in our jurisdiction for four days. He took a boat trip from our coast and even spent a night in the countryside, in an area around Vila Real de Santo António”.

Sources connected to the investigation have suggested there are more Portuguese involved in the terror group, which is still being investigated.

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