German court convicts Borussia Dortmund bombing suspect

Sergej W sentenced to 14 years for 2017 attack on team bus before Champions League quarter-final.

    The man named as Sergej W is said to have placed a bet that Dortmund shares would drop in value before the attack [Marcel Kusch/AP Photo]
    The man named as Sergej W is said to have placed a bet that Dortmund shares would drop in value before the attack [Marcel Kusch/AP Photo]

    A German court has sentenced a man to 14 years in prison over last year's attack on the Borussia Dortmund football team's bus.

    The dpa news agency reported that the defendant, who has been identified only as Sergej W in line with Germany's privacy rules, was convicted on 28 counts of attempted murder by the Dortmund state court on Tuesday.

    Dortmund defender Marc Bartra and a police officer were injured when three explosions hit the team's bus as it left a hotel in the western German city for a Champions League game on April 11, 2017.

    WATCH: Dortmund attack suspect is a 'market trader' (2:14)

    Prosecutors alleged that Sergej took out a loan and placed a short bet that Borussia Dortmund's shares would drop in value.

    He then bombed the bus and tried to disguise the attack by placing letters claiming responsibility, which said the attack was carried out "in the name of Allah".

    The initial police investigation focused on the possibility that the attack was carried out by the supporters of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group and arrested an Iraqi national.

    However, the man was later released without being charged and the officials said they doubted there was a connection.

    A German news outlet also received a claim of responsibility suggesting a far-right motive, but that was also dismissed as false.

    Sergej W was arrested 10 days after the attack in the town of Tubingen in south-west Germany.

    He had drawn suspicions from an Austrian stockbroker after placing a high number of short bets on Dortmund stock immediately before the attack.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and news agencies