Hostage-taker at Amsterdam Apple store demanded ransom, police say
The man who took at least one person hostage Tuesday at an Apple store in Amsterdam demanded a ransom of more than $226 million in cryptocurrencies, according to The Associated Press, which cited police and prosecutors.
The suspect, a 27-year-old Bulgarian man, was dressed in camouflage clothing and armed with a handgun and another automatic weapon when he took the person hostage on Tuesday afternoon and demanded the ransom, Amsterdam police said at a news conference, according to the AP.
Police surrounded the premises and freed about 70 people from the building that housed the Apple store before detaining the suspect, the AP reported.
The five-hour standoff ended Tuesday evening when the hostage fled from the suspect, who chased the person and was run over by police.
“The hostage played a sort of hero’s role by, in that split second that he had, forcing a breakthrough in this situation,” Amsterdam Police Chief Frank Paauw said at a news conference Wednesday, according to the AP. “Otherwise it could have been a very long and unpleasant night and maybe longer.”
Amsterdam police tweeted that the suspect was taken to a local hospital after police struck and apprehended him. A robot checked the suspect for explosives after he was run over, according to the AP, as he had previously threatened to blow himself up when speaking with police.
“We managed to stop the hostage-taker by hitting him as he ran out. Violent images of that collision can be seen. We now know that the suspect had no explosives on his body and medical personnel are now taking care of him,” police tweeted.
In a statement obtained by Reuters, Apple said it was “incredibly grateful and relieved that our employees and customers in Amsterdam are safe after this terrifying experience.”