Apple says employees, customers safe after store hostage situation (Lead)

After a 27-year-old man held an Apple Store customer hostage for several hours at the company’s flagship store in Amsterdam and demanded $200 million in cryptocurrency, the tech giant has said that all its employees and customers are safe.

The suspect, in camouflage gear, fired a gun and then held an Apple employee hostage for several hours before being apprehended late on Tuesday.

“We want to thank local law enforcement for their exceptional work and ongoing investigation. Our teams and customers took swift action and showed incredible strength and resolve,” an Apple spokesperson told TechCrunch on Wednesday.

Several other people who were also inside the Apple Store managed to escape.

“The suspect has since been taken to hospital. For the time being, we are still conducting extensive research in the Apple Store on Leidseplein,” the Amsterdam Police said in a tweet.

Police on the scene hit the running suspect with an armoured BMW X5.

“As the suspect lay motionless on the ground, police sent over a robot to check him for explosives, confirming none were present,” reports The Verge.

It’s unclear what prompted the incident. According to the police, the suspect “sent selfies and other photos to AT5 (a local publication) during the incident that appeared to show him wearing a bomb vest”.

Apple has over 500 retail locations worldwide.

Last year, an Apple Store became scene of a crime when two teenagers in Atlanta, Georgia, in the US were arrested for allegedly shooting a store security guard.

A security guard at a Manhattan Apple Store was also stabbed last year, after informing a customer that he was required to wear a mask to enter the store.

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