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Spain says arrested man planned university attacks

Associated Press Modified: October 4, 2012 at 9:16 am •  Published: October 4, 2012

MADRID (AP) — Spanish police said Thursday they arrested a man on suspicion that he planned to imitate the 1999 Columbine school killings by planting bombs around a university campus.

Interior Minister Jorge Fernandez Diaz hailed the arrest, saying that "It appears a massacre has been averted."

In a statement, police said they seized 140 kilograms (308 pounds) of bomb-making material when they arrested the 21-year-old man in the Balearic island city of Palma de Mallorca on Wednesday.

Police said that in his personal diary and Internet blog, the man — a Spaniard only identified by his initials J.M.M.S. — talked of his admiration for the perpetrators of the Columbine attacks and how he planned to place several bombs around a campus in Palma.

The statement said the man had openly expressed his hatred for society, and particularly students. A police spokesman said there was nothing to indicate that the man had planned to carry out the attack for any set ideological reasons.

Twelve students and one teacher were killed in the Columbine attack in Colorado. The two perpetrators then killed themselves. The Spanish man's diary indicated he had considered committing suicide once he had carried out the attack.

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