Hans Jørgen Bonnichsen, who ran Denmark's PET security police between 1997 and 2006, said the case reminded him of the Gladsax bomber, who set off nine pipe bombs in the city at the end of the 1970s.
“To me, it looks like this is a loser, who like the Gladsax bomber, is screaming for attention,” he said.
“It strikes me at first glance as if this is a person who feels he cannot get any publicity or get on the front page of the newspapers in any other way. This is a way he can get five minutes of fame in his otherwise sad everyday life.”
An explosion rocked a Copenhagen police station in the early hours of Saturday, causing damage but no injuries, just days after a similar blast at the national tax agency.
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Danish police said on Sunday evening that they had received 150 tip-offs from witnesses present around the time of Saturday's explosion at a police station in Copenhagen's Nørrebro district.
The police are now looking for a man who left a plastic bag outside the police station shortly before the blast went off.
The man was wearing a black jacket and dark, loose-fitting trousers with a pocket on his right leg, and black shoes.
The Gladsax bomber was caught after his ninth and final bomb went off too early, blowing off three of his fingers. He was overpowered by a passer-by and arrested.
He turned out to be Allan Steen Kristensen, an intelligent, academic 19-year-old, who in court claimed to have had no political motives for carrying out the attacks.
After his release in 1981, Kristensen went on to get a degree in chemical engineering, marry and have two children.
Allan Steen Kristensen was arrested after one of his pipe bombs detonated too early and blew off three of his fingers. Photo: Ørgen Jessen / Ritzau Scanpix
Bonnichsen stressed that not enough is known about the recent blasts to be certain that the current bomber has the same motivations as Kristensen, or even that both blasts were caused by the same perpetrator.
“Something I know as an old investigator is that one should never get stuck to one theory. On the contrary, one must continue to be open to all possibilities,” he said. “But I must admit that this reminds me a lot of the bombs in Gladsaxe.”
He pointed out that the Saturday night blast could have been carried out by a 'copycat' attacker.