The regional police in Spain’s northern region of Catalonia have identified a suspect named Manuel Murillo, who was arrested in Barcelona on September 19 for allegedly planning to assassinate the country’s socialist prime minister, Pedro Sánchez.
At the time of his arrest, the police found in his apartment wide array of firearms that included four high-powered sniper rifles, a military-grade assault weapon, a submachine gun, and 16 handguns. According to Spanish daily, El Pais, Murillo was a security guard and had a gun license for some of the weapons that were impounded.
The man is the son of the former mayor of Rubi, a town of 74,000-people near Barcelona. The 63-year old lived with his disabled mother and sister. He is a former accomplished athlete and has no criminal record.
Police reports indicate that Murillo had declared his intention to assassinate Sánchez in numerous WhatsApp groups, including having shared his plans with the local leader of the far-right political party Vox, who, ironically, later passed on the audio and text messages to the police.
Murillo is currently being held without bail and is charged for conspiring to attack an official and the possession of illegal weapons.