Police search for suspects behind Lund car burnings after more vehicles destroyed

The southern city of Lund has seen around a dozen car burnings since the Midsummer holiday, and this week further incidents were reported.

Police search for suspects behind Lund car burnings after more vehicles destroyed
Damaged cars after a suspected arson attack in Lund in late June. Photo: Johan Nilsson / TT

A total of four cars were set alight in two different locations on Monday night.

Police have not yet made any arrests in connection with the apparent arson attacks, and have said they do not have any suspects. But Lund police superintendent Cecilia Kjaersgaard said it was possible all the fires were started by a single perpetrator.

“It's difficult to make any declarations, but naturally we are thinking that it could be the same perpetrator behind it, because we have had so many fires now,” she told the TT news agency.

She said local police were working intensively on the cases. 

“We want the general public to pay attention to individuals out at night, and we are interested in all observations that don't seem to fit the usual pattern,” she said.

Earlier in the month, Lund police said they were struggling to identify a motive or possible suspects behind the car burnings because the city doesn't have a pattern of the social unrest that typically accompanies this type of crime.

READ MORE: Who's behind Lund's spate of car burnings?

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KEY POINTS: What we know about the suspected murder of two Brits in Malmö

British press have now named the two men believed to have been shot dead in Malmö, with their bodies then incinerated in the car they had hired at Copenhagen Airport only hours earlier. This is what we know so far.

KEY POINTS: What we know about the suspected murder of two Brits in Malmö

What happened? 

Two charred bodies were found in a burned-out car on Stenåldersgatan in the Fosie industrial area of Malmö on Sunday afternoon. Although the bodies have yet to be clearly identified, the Danish-registered Toyota RAV4 had been hired by two British men.

On Tuesday morning, two British men were reported missing by their families after failing to return from a business trip to Malmö, while Sweden’s TV4 broadcaster reported that the two men appeared to have been shot dead before the vehicle was set alight. 

What do we know about the suspected victims?

The British media have identified the two missing men as Juan Cifuentes and Farooq Abdulrazak, 33 and 37, who ran the Empire Holidays Travel Agency in London and whose families had reported them missing, but this has yet to be confirmed by the Swedish police. 

“The car that was found is the one that Juan and Farooq had rented,” The Daily Mail newspaper reported a relative of Juan Cifuentes saying. “The Swedish police have been in contact with us and are providing updates on the situation. They believe the two men in the car are possibly Juan and Farooq but the bodies are yet to be identified.”

According to the relatives of Cifuentes, the two men had been on a short business trip to Malmö and had been expected to return back to the UK in time to watch the UEFA Euros final on Monday evening. 

Laura Cifuentes, Juan’s sister, told The Sun newspaper that there was still “no confirmation” that they had been shot as the bodies in the car had yet to be identified by a forensic team. But she was there was “probably a 99 percent chance” that the bodies in the car were those of her brother and his friend. 

Another family source told the newspaper that both men were “nice, normal guys”, and that Juan was a family man who coached football for children in his North London community.

What has so far been officially confirmed? 

The UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office has confirmed that it is in contact with the families of two men reported missing in Sweden. “We are supporting the families of two British men reported missing in Sweden and are in touch with the local authorities,” they told The Sun newspaper. 

Police in Sweden have confirmed that the burnt-out car is a Danish hire car, and confirmed that the victims were “not Danish” when earlier reports suggested they were.

They are calling for any witnesses who saw the car between 11.30am och 2pm on Sunday, which gives an indication of when the murder is thought to have taken place. 

Swedish police have also confirmed that they are working with “foreign police” on the case, although they have not confirmed reports that they were working through the Interpol international police agency. 

Claes Ljung, the British consul in Malmö, has confirmed to the Sydsvenksan newspaper that he was contacted by “a relative of a British citizen who was very worried about what had happened to this relative”, and had forwarded the case to the consular department at the embassy in Stockholm. 

What is known about what happened to the two men? 

The two men were last caught on surveillance footage earlier on Sunday as they were driving over the Öresund Bridge from Denmark. According to information given to the Sydsvenskan newspaper, the surveillance photos show that there were three people in the car at the time.

Have Brits been murdered in Sweden previously? 
Not recently. But it has happened the other way around. In 2022 a Swedish man was found guilty of shooting dead a Swedish-Albanian record producer in Battersea, London, in an example of the gang feuds that have raged in Sweden in recent years spreading over the North Sea to the UK.