Fake terrorist attack alert goes viral
Police hunt robbers after driver is beaten and lorry stolen at gunpoint
By Richard Torné POLICE in Almería are on the hunt for three armed men after the theft of a lorry sparked a rumour they were planning a terrorist attack.
The incident happened in Almería city about 06.00 on Friday (October 6) when a lorry driver who was sleeping in his cabin on a lay-by was attacked by three men wielding a knife and a handgun.
The assailants tied the driver up and dumped him by the roadside before driving the lorry away. A witness called the police after seeing the victim lying on the ground and bleeding from a head wound.
However, the story took on an unexpected twist when a recording purportedly made by someone from the security forces went viral on the WhatsApp messaging service, warning about an imminent terrorist attack.
This reporter had access to the 36-second recording in which a male voice says: “They've sent us a message that they've stolen a lorry at gunpoint... a Spaniard and two Arabs in Guardia Civil waistcoats... for sure, these sons of bitches are planning a terrorist attack somewhere because there's no sign of the lorry yet.”
The lorry was recovered hours later some 30 kilometres away to the east in Níjar, but the police were quick to refute the story, saying the lorry had been stolen by common crooks.
A police source told CBNews that the vehicle had been used to commit an unrelated crime, but would not give further details as the theft was part of an ongoing investigation and the suspects were still at large.
He also confirmed that the recording had not been made by a police officer, but could not say whether it may have come from a member of the other emergency services.
The lorry driver was admitted to Torrecárdenas Hospital but was released soon afterwards following treatment.
A real Guardia Civil roadblock