French police have arrested a man at the Disneyland Paris theme park after he was found with two two low-calibre handguns and a Quran hidden inside a suitcase.
An Interior Ministry official said the 28-year-old man was stopped by security staff entering a hotel after his baggage was put through an X-ray machine. A box of cartridges and a Quran were also found, according to RTL radio. He was said to be entering the hotel to make a reservation.
The man, reported to live in Paris, did not resist arrest at around noon local time and French media report he is not known to the local police or French intelligence, or featured on any terrorist watchlist. His only criminal record is for a driving offence.
Le Parisien reports he was with a woman who fled the scene at the Disneyland New York Hotel, about 20 miles east of the French capital. She was arrested overnight.
François Banon, Vice President Communication and Public Affairs, Disneyland Paris, said:
“During a routine security screening checkpoint at one of our hotels, weapons were discovered in a guest’s luggage through our x-ray machine. The police were immediately notified and the individual was arrested.
“We continue to work closely with the authorities, and the safety and security of our guests and cast members is our utmost priority.”
The arrested man said he was carrying the guns for protection because he felt “under threat”. A judicial, rather than anti-terror, investigation was launched as police do not believe he was planning any kind of attack, but he may yet face charges of transporting and owning illegal weapons.
It has now emerged the man told officers he was moving house away from Paris, and had temporarily stored most of belongings at his mother’s house. She refused to look after his guns, forcing him to take them to Disneyland Paris for his planned break with his girlfriend.
France remains in a state of emergency following November’s deadly Paris attacks which saw 130 people killed by Islamic State supporting terrorists.
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