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Lindh suspect denies murder role

The suspect is reportedly the same man seen in the surveillance video.
The suspect is reportedly the same man seen in the surveillance video.

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Swedish police arrest suspect in Lindh killing
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Sweden mourning Foreign Minister Anna Lindh
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STOCKHOLM, Sweden (CNN) -- The man arrested over the murder of Swedish Foreign Minister Anna Lindh has denied his involvement in her death, his defense lawyer has said.

Lawyer Gunnar Falk, appointed by the court, said the suspect -- who is yet to be identified -- would plead not guilty to any murder charges, Swedish TV4 reported on Wednesday.

Police arrested the 35-year-old man on Tuesday but say he is not the only suspect in the murder of Lindh, stabbed several times in a department store in Stockholm last week.

Police have taken DNA from the man and will match it with samples taken from a blue baseball cap, which is believed to be have been left by the suspect at the crime scene. The test results should be available before Friday, local media reported.

The suspect is described as a drifter with a history of violent crimes and drug offences and is the same man seen on surveillance video from the Nordiska Kompaniet department store where Lindh was attacked, local media have reported.

Investigators have said they were also aided by other items left at the crime scene, including the weapon used to kill Lindh and a sweatshirt similar to the one seen on the man in the video.

The man has not yet been charged but by law, police are allowed to hold a suspect for three days before a prosecutor must decide on possible legal action or further detention.

The man has been placed on a 24-hour suicide watch, The Associated Press reported.

Plains clothed police apprehended the suspect at a restaurant outside Stockholm in the town of Solna. The man was unarmed and there was no struggle.

Officials said they had received a number of leads, spurred in part by the public release of the surveillance video.

Lindh, 46, was one of the nation's most popular politicians and a memorial service will be held for her on Friday.

U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell is set to attend the ceremony. Powell considered Lindh his "friend and colleague," a State Department spokesman said.

Lindh's murder sent shockwaves throughout Sweden, which is known worldwide for its low crime rate.

It also stirred memories of the 1986 assassination of Swedish Prime Minister Olof Palme, who was gunned down outside a Stockholm cinema as he and his wife left the building. His wife was wounded in the attack.

Palme's killer was never found.


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