Suspect under investigation in Toulouse killings probe

June 1, 2013 21:22

PARIS - A French judge put under formal investigation on Saturday a 31-year-old man suspected of helping an al-Qaida-inspired gunman prepare a shooting spree in the southern France city of Toulouse last year, a judicial source said.

The man is suspected of providing weapons and a bullet-proof vest to Mohamed Merah, who killed seven people including three Jewish children and three soldiers in and around Toulouse in March 2012 before he was shot dead by police.It was the worst such attack on French soil since the 1995 bombings on the Paris underground by Algeria's Armed Islamic Group (GIA) that killed eight and wounded scores.

Under French law, a formal investigation means there exists "serious or consistent evidence" of a suspect's probable implication in a crime and is an important step towards a trial.

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