The uncle of the truck driver who killed 84 people on the French Riviera last week says his nephew was indoctrinated about two weeks ago by an Algerian member of the Islamic State group in Nice.
IS claimed responsibility for last week’s attack, though Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve says Monday investigators have found no sign yet that Bouhlel had links to a particular network.
The driver’s uncle, Sadok Bouhlel, tells The Associated Press that given Bouhlel’s family problems — he was estranged from his wife and three children — the Algerian “found in Mohamed an easy prey for recruitment.”
Bouhlel’s rapid radicalization has puzzled investigators. Friends and family say he had not been an observant Muslim in the past.
“Mohamed didn’t pray, didn’t go to the mosque and ate pork,” says Sadok Bouhlel, a 69-year-old retired teacher, in the driver’s hometown of Msaken, Tunisia. He says he learned about the Algerian recruiter from extended family members who live in Nice.