Equityworld – Turkish security forces on Tuesday said they had arrested a French citizen of Turkish origin who was allegedly one of the planners behind a New Year™s Day nightclub bombing in Istanbul that killed 39 people and wounded 65.
Prosecutors identified the 22-year-old man by the initials A.S. and said he was arrested in Istanbul on February 12. He allegedly signed the lease on a home rented to nightclub attack suspect Abdulkadir Masharipov, who is an Uzbek national. Nine other suspects are also in custody ” all linked to the Islamic State group, Turkish authorities say.
The Turkish Daily Sabah said the suspect was born in Turkey and had been living in France and Turkey. He was charged with being affiliated with a terrorist organization. Prosecutor Sadi DoÄŸan told Turkish media that A.S. helped orchestrate the attack.
News reports, citing testimony given in court Saturday, said Masharipov admitted to being an IS follower. He was quoted as telling the court that œit would be good if he was given capital punishment.
Masharipov was charged Saturday with belonging to an armed terrorist group ” Islamic State ” possession of heavy weapons, attempting to destroy constitutional order, and murder.
The suspect fled from the scene of the shootings by blending into the chaotic crowds, police said. Masharipov was arrested 17 days later in Istanbul after a nationwide manhunt.
Authorities said he received terrorist training in Afghanistan and that he had confessed to the Reina nightclub attack, which occurred early January 1.