Thai police release photos of two new bombing suspects

Thai police release photos of two new suspects with arrest warrants after discovering bomb-making materials in raid of second Bangkok apartment

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

Pictures of two new suspects of Erawan Shrine bombing released by Thai police

Thai police have on Monday issued arrest warrants for two more suspects, a Thai woman and another foreign man of unknown nationality, and expanded the parameters of their search for suspects behind the deadly bombing in Bangkok.

Thai police broadcasted a photograph of the woman's Thai identification card and a sketch of the man with a light beard and short brown hair, during a televised statement.

Thai police have also announced bomb-making materials were found in a second apartment in the outskirts of Bangkok during a raid on Sunday as part of the Erawan Shrine investigation.

The second apartment was rented by the Thai woman identified as 26-year-old Wanna Suansun. The unidentified man was believed to have lived in the apartment as well.

The material police found  at the apartment in Bangkok's Min Buri district included fertilizer, gunpowder, digital clocks and remote-controlled cars - the parts of which could be used to create a detonator - among other items, national police spokesman Prawut Thawornsiri said.

"These are bomb-making materials," Prawut said. "Nobody would keep urea fertilizer and gunpowder unless they wanted to make a bomb."

The new announcements came two days after Thai police arrested a suspect on Saturday in connection with the bombing.

Saturday's arrest is considered the first possible breakthrough in the investigation. The August 17 blast killed 20 people and injured more than 100 others.

The first unnamed suspect, however, still remains a mistery on various levels as none of his nationality, motive, relationship to the alleged bombing network or if he was plotting a second attack is unknown.

"He is not cooperating much. From our preliminary investigation, we think he isn't telling us the truth," Prawut said, declining to elaborate. "He told us how he entered Thailand but we don't believe everything he says." The interrogation was proceeding slowly as Thai police said.

The identity and nationality of the man became a matter of controversy shortly after his arrest as one of the passports found in his apartment indicated he was a Turkish citizen.

Later a Thai National Police Spokesman confirmed that the document is fake and they do not know the man’s nationality.

“The passport you see is fake,” said Prawut, “We don’t know if he is Turkish or not.”

Turkey’s Bangkok Embassy also told local authorities in Thailand that the suspect is not a Turkish citizen.

Thai authorities have drawn criticism as the investigation has failed to produce any concrete results so far and inconsistencies in the evidence have undermined the reliability of investigation.

After the man’s arrest Thailand’s Nation TV on Saturday aired an image of a suicide vest allegedly belonging to the alleged bomber.

The image later proved to be fake as it was taken from US Transport Security Administration’s official blog on March 8, 2013.

Thai authorities have asked people to desist from criticism of the investigation so as to not damage the "nation's reputation"



TRTWorld and agencies