Brussels went into 'highest terror alert' following the incident last Monday. Photo: AP/ Sky News

Terrorist who murdered football fans in Brussels ‘fled Portugal’ eight years ago

Tunisian extremist Abdeslam Lassoued was arrested in Guarda

The terrorist who claimed to be a member of Islamic State shot dead in Brussels this week after killing two Swedish football fans ‘fled Portugal’ eight years ago.

In another example of how difficult it is to expel illegal immigrants once they have arrived in Europe, reports describe how Abdeslam Lassoued was arrested by SEF (borders and foreigners agency) in Guarda in September, 2015, after being found working, without necessary legal papers, on an agricultural exploration in Alverca da Beira.

According to Observador, “when he was detected in Portugal, SEF inspectors realised that there was an order prohibiting his entry into Sweden, emitted in February, 2013 and valid until January, 2016.

The plan was to have Lassoued formally expelled from national territory. But the magistrate hearing the case instead opted to rule that he report weekly to the local police station. Within a week, Lassoued ‘vanished’.

He was then flagged in Belgium in 2016, where he lived ‘illegally’ until his assault rifle rampage on Monday.

“During the attack, he recorded various videos in which he declared to be a member of Islamic State”, adds Observador. “He was killed by police the next day”, following a city-wide manhunt. 

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