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Internet link in Finland school killings

Nov. 10, 2007 at 10:26 AM   |   Comments

HELSINKI, Finland, Nov. 10 (UPI) -- Police believe a teenager in Finland who killed eight classmates had contact over the Internet with a youth planning a similar event in the United States.

A spokesman for Helsinki's cyber crime department says Pekka-Eric Auvinen, 18, and Dillon Cossey of Pennsylvania probably were in contact over two MySpace groups, The Times of London reported Saturday.

Cossey, 14, was arrested on charges of planning an attack at a Philadelphia high school less than two weeks before Auvinen bought a gun to carry out his murder-suicide at his high school in Finland

Police say it seems the teens may have shared information on two MySpace groups devoted to the 1999 rampage at Columbine High School in Colorado.

Investigators are now trying to determine whether the massacre in Finland was in some way a copycat event or whether it resulted from an exchange of tips across the Internet.

Cyber-crime experts are worried that some of the abuses on the net committed by Islamic fanatics could become a model for other marginalized groups, The Times says.

© 2007 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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