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Was fugitive held for drink driving in Spain prior to the Paris attacks?

Fiona Govan
Fiona Govan - [email protected]
Was fugitive held for drink driving in Spain prior to the Paris attacks?
Photo: Appeal issued by Police Nationale

One of the jihadists involved in the Paris shootings and the subject of an international manhunt was held by police in Spain just weeks before the shooting, according to reports in Catalan media.

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The Catalan daily El Punta Vui reported that Isis militant Salah Abdeslam was stopped by traffic police and breathalyzed during a roadside check outside the town of Figueres, near the French border in Catalonia.

The regional newspaper reported that the 26-year old who was born in Belgium and has French nationality was then arrested for driving over the alcohol limit and his car impounded but it released several days after he presented his documents and paid a fine.

The report has not been confirmed by either the Catalan regional police force, Mossos d’Esquadra, or Spain’s interior ministry.

But the regional newspaper claims to have sources who have confirmed Abdeslam was held and who recognized him from the police appeal poster.

An international manhunt was launched on Sunday for 26-year-old Salah Abdelslam, one of three brothers thought to be involved in last Friday's attacks which claimed at least 129 lives.

French police released a photo of the suspect they were looking for in connection with the attacks, describing him as a "dangerous individual".

READ: all the latest news on Paris attacks

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