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CRIME

Police hunt killer following double murder

Police in the Bernese Oberland are searching for a murder weapon after a man and a woman were found stabbed to death at a children’s home in Spiez.

Police hunt killer following double murder
The crime scene was close to the railway station in Spiez. Photo:bps

Police officers made the grim discovery on Saturday afternoon after being called to the villa at Bahnhofstrasse 47, the Blick tabloid reported.

“Both the dead had been stabbed several times,” spokeswoman Alice Born said.

A number of children were in the care home at the time, and apparently knew nothing of what had happened.

The killings have shocked local residents. “I can’t believe that something so terrible would happen here,” Blick quoted a neighbour as saying.

The home, described as a “pedagogical community”, takes care of children who cannot live with their parents, according to its website.

The director of the institution describes it as “a small home with a family atmosphere”.

The 53 year old, who lives in the home, could not be reached on Sunday.

Neighbours describe him as a decent person who looked after the children himself and played with them in the garden.

The police have not named the male and female victims. They are calling for witnesses to come forward.

Also at the weekend, a 36-year-old Italian man was shot dead outside his home in Frasses, in the canton of Fribourg.

The man was parking his car at around midnight when shots rang out, the cantonal police reported.

The victim’s girlfriend and four children were not hurt.

The police are searching for two suspects who are reported to have made off across the fields in the direction of Payerne. 

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CRIME

Swiss woman indicted over ‘jihadist knife attack’ in department store

Swiss prosecutors said Wednesday they had indicted a woman for attempted murder on behalf of the Islamic State (IS) group over a brutal knife attack in November 2020.

Swiss woman indicted over 'jihadist knife attack' in department store

The 29-year-old unnamed woman allegedly attacked two women in a department store in the southern city of Lugano.

She has been charged with attempted murder and violating laws against association with Al-Qaeda, IS and related groups, according to the indictment.

She was also charged with unlawful prostitution.

EXPLAINED: Does Switzerland face a threat from terrorism?

The attorney general’s office said the indictment related to a “jihadist knife attack” and the alleged assailant, a Swiss citizen, “intended to kill her victims and to commit a terrorist act on behalf of IS.”

“The suspect acted wilfully and with particular ruthlessness. She brutally attacked her randomly-selected victims with a knife, with the aim of killing them and thereby spreading terror throughout the population on behalf of the ‘Islamic State’,” it said.

One of the two victims sustained serious neck injuries while the second victim, with help from others at the scene, managed to overpower her attacker and hold her until police arrived.

The attacker was arrested and detained. Police quickly discovered she had been linked to a 2017 jihadism investigation.

The woman had formed a relationship on social media with a jihadist fighter in Syria and attempted to travel to the war-torn country to meet him, police alleged at the time.

She was stopped by Turkish authorities at the Syrian border and sent back to Switzerland, they said, adding that the woman had suffered from mental health problems and been admitted to a psychiatric clinic.

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