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Seven men were arrested Thursday in the Netherlands on suspicion of plotting a large-scale extremist attack that Dutch prosecutors said they think was foiled following a months-long investigation.
...The investigation was launched by intelligence suggesting the alleged ring leader, a 34-year-old man of Iraqi heritage, wanted to carry out an attack at the site of a large event and cause multiple casualties, according to the statement.
The suspects allegedly wanted to use bomb vests and assault rifles to do harm at the event, and planned to detonate a car bomb at another location, prosecutors said. An investigation of potential targets was continuing.
...Prosecutors said the suspects ranged in age from 21 to 34. Three of them, including the 34-year-old Iraqi, were previously convicted of attempting to travel overseas to join extremist networks.
The men were attempting to obtain AK47 assault rifles, handguns, bomb vests, grenades and raw materials for bombs and were looking for opportunities to train with such weapons, according to the statement.
Prosecutors said that the investigation sped up this month because of the suspects’ “advanced preparations.”