Suspected IS recruiter arrested in Germany raids

A suspected IS recruiter has been arrested during a series of raids in Frankfurt.

The unnamed Tunisian man, 36, is being held on suspicion of supporting a foreign terrorist organisation.

Authorities fear he was in the early stages of orchestrating an attack in Germany with the help of a network of supporters.

German police officers stand guard in front of a mosque during a terror raid in Frankfurt Credit: AP

Investigators believe the man had been a recruiter and smuggler for IS since August 2015 and according to Turkish officials, he is also suspected of being involved in a deadly museum attack in his homeland in March 2015.

Authorities in Germany raided 54 flats, business premises and mosques across the city and surrounding region as part of a four-month investigation focused on 16 people aged between 16 and 46.

Timeline leading up to arrest:

  • 2003-2013: Tunisian suspect is in Germany

  • August 2015: returns to Germany as an asylum-seeker

  • 2016: arrested in Frankfurt because he had not finished serving a 2008 sentence for bodily harm

  • 2016: Tunisia is seeking his extradition for alleged involvement in planning and carrying out the March 2015 attacks in his homeland

  • November 2016: he is released again because he had served his previous sentence and Tunisia had failed to provide full documentation to support his extradition within the required 40-day deadline, prosecutors said

  • November 2016: he is kept under round-the-clock surveillance

  • February 2017: the man is arrested in raids planned for four months by German police.