The pensioner who sent letters with explosives to the Ukrainian embassy wanted to stop Spainʼs support for Ukraine

Anna Kholodnova

The Spaniard, who is suspected of sending letters with explosives, in particular to the address of the Embassy of Ukraine, wanted to force his country to abandon its support for Ukraine.

Reuters writes about this with reference to the statement of the investigating judge.

Pompeo Gonzalez Pascual is currently under formal investigation for two possible aggravated terrorism charges and four counts of terrorism. The first court hearing has already taken place in his case, and he will be held in custody pending formal charges and further hearings.

The judge also said that the 74-year-old suspect used the Russian social network Vkontakte and the Swiss encrypted e-mail service Protonmail, which may indicate a risk of him fleeing to Russia. Russian propaganda media Russia Today and Sputnik, as well as Spanish-language sites about weapons and chemistry, were also found in his browser history.

According to the judge, the suspectʼs actions indicate an intention to disrupt public peace and create the impression that they were committed by people connected to Russia, as retaliation for the support of Ukraine by Spain and the United States. The evidence suggests that Gonzalez acted independently.

"There is no indication that the person under investigation belongs to or cooperates with any terrorist gang or organized group," the judge noted.

During the search of Gonzalezʼs house, various cylindrical rods similar to those found in improvised explosive devices were found. Screws, springs and precision drills that he could have used to make explosives were also found in the suspectʼs home.

To buy it all, Gonzalez used Amazon. He also bought potassium nitrate, wick cable, switches, copper wires and incandescent bulbs there.

Police were able to track down Gonzalez through the stamps on the envelopes — some of which could only be bought in a small number of shops in Burgos. Before retiring in 2013, the suspect worked at the city hall of Vitoria-Gasteiz.