A Canary Wharf banker, killed trying to protect an injured woman by fighting off the London Bridge terrorists with his skateboard, has been awarded Spain’s highest honour.
Spanish native Ignacio Echeverría, 39, worked as a financial crime compliance analyst for HSBC and lived in Poplar. He had been passing through Borough Market with friends on the evening on Saturday, June 3.
One of his friends Guillermo Sánchez told El País newspaper that they had been on their way to Whitechapel to go for dinner when they saw a man staggering through Borough Market. They assumed he was drunk, but then saw a police officer collapse and a woman being assaulted.
Guillermo said: “I’m focusing on her and then, suddenly, I see that Ignacio’s there, starting to hit the attackers with his skateboard.
“Then he falls to the ground. I do not know how – I do not know if it is because he slips or whatever, but he falls.”
He added that within “microseconds” he saw one of the attackers stab Ignacio with the others nearby, and said: “The last thing I remember is Ignacio, lying there still conscious and clutching his skateboard.”
Guillermo and another friend ran away from the attackers and, when they tried to return to help Ignacio, they were stopped by police.
Ignacio was confirmed as one of the eight victims of the terror attack on Wednesday, June 7. Spain’s Foreign Ministry has revealed Ignacio’s post mortem concluded that he died after being stabbed in the back.
The Daily Mail reported that his funeral was held in Las Rozas, Madrid, on Sunday, June 11, and attended by the archbishop of Madrid Carlos Osoro.
He has been posthumously awarded Spain’s highest honour for civilians, the Grand Cross of the Order of Civil Merit.
Thousands of people attended a vigil in Ignacio’s hometown of Las Rozas, on the outskirts of Madrid, on Thursday, June 8, where skateboards were held in the air in his memory.
Eight people died and 48 were injured when Khuram Butt, Rachid Radouane and Youssef Zaghba ran over pedestrians in a van on London Bridge before stabbing people in Borough Market. All three attackers were shot dead by police.
Police have made a number of arrests in east London following the attack.
A 19-year-old man was arrested in Barking on suspicion of terrorism offences at 9.50pm on Sunday, June 11. He has been taken into custody at a south London police station and police are searching a house in Barking.
Six other men remain in custody.
- A 28-year-old arrested in Barking on 2.05am on Saturday, June 10
- A 27-year-old arrested on a street in Ilford at 10pm on Monday, June 5
- A 29-year-old also arrested in Ilford on Monday, June 5
- A 30-year-old arrested in Ilford at 1.30am on Wednesday, June 7
- A 29-year-old arrested in Newham at 1.15am on Friday, June 9
- A 27-year-old arrested in Ilford at 8.36pm on Friday, June 9
Thirteen people have so far been released without charge. A 33-year-old man arrested in Ilford on June 8 on suspicion of possession with intent to supply controlled drugs and suspicion of firearms offences has been bailed until late June.
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