Police probing a series of explosions at IKEA furniture stores in several countries have detained two men in northwestern Poland.
The pair are suspected of trying to extort six million euros from the retail giant amid a series of bomb blasts that sparked a pan-European investigation.
Items uncovered during the arrests were presented as signs of a carefully-planned criminal operation by the suspects, both aged 39.
“They used various techniques of camouflage,” said Polish police commander Andrzej Matejuk. “They chose places for the crimes far away from Poland in order not to be connected with their own country.”
The hunt for those behind the attacks was a race against time, police said, because the explosive charges were getting stronger.
Devices went off at IKEA stores in Belgium, France, the Netherlands, Germany and the Czech Republic between May and September. Two people were injured.
Charged with endangering life, extortion and racketeering, the suspects have very different profiles. Police say one is a multilingual former business executive while the other has a record for drugs crimes.