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German Prosecutors Probed Berlin Attack Suspect for Fraud

  • Associated Press

Anis Amri is shown in handout pictures from the German Bundeskriminalamt Federal Crime Office, released Dec. 21, 2016. The main suspect in a truck attack on a Christmas market in Berlin, Amri was killed last Friday in shootout with police in Milan, Italy.

Prosecutors in western Germany say they opened a fraud investigation earlier this year against Anis Amri, the main suspect in last week's Berlin truck attack, suspecting that he simultaneously claimed benefits in two towns under different identities.

Detlef Nowotsch, a spokesman for prosecutors in Duisburg, said Thursday the investigation was opened in April but shelved in November because Amri's whereabouts were unknown. Amri was accused of receiving asylum-seeker benefits in both Emmerich and Oberhausen for a few days in late 2015.

Amri is believed to have driven the truck that plowed into a Christmas market December 19, killing 12 people. His fingerprints and wallet were found in the truck.

The Tunisian arrived in Germany in July 2015. Authorities later put him on a list of potentially violent Islamic extremists.

Amri was killed last Friday in a shootout with police in Milan, Italy.

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