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Suspect in 2016 southern bombings caught

southern bombings

One of the suspects wanted in connection with a series of bomb blasts in seven southern provinces on Aug 10-12, 2016, killing at least four people and injuring dozens, has been arrested, police said on Sunday.

Police identified the suspect as Abdulsatopa Sulong, 36, a native of tambon Tuyong in Nong Chik district, Pattani province. He was wanted under three warrants dated Nov 8, 2016 and another warrant dated Feb 23, 2017 issued by the 41st Military Circle Court.

Mr Abdulsatopa was arrested by Pattani police at a spot on Pattanipirom road in Muang district of Pattani on May 1.

After the arrest, a team of Phuket police was dispatched to Pattani to collect the suspect, who was allegedly involved in two explosions in Patong district.

Mr Abdulsatopa was brought from Pattani to Patong district of Phuket on Saturday.

In the series of bombings between Aug 10-12, 2016, the attackers focused on tourist hotspots. They included four bomb explosions in Hua Hin district in the lower Central province of Prachuap Khirikhan where two people died; two blasts in Surat Thani where one person died; two explosions in the tourist beach town of Patong in Phuket; one blast in Trang where one person died; and several explosions in the beach province of Phangnga.

The incidents prompted a massive investigation led by Pol Gen Srivara Ransibramanakul, the then national police chief. Warrants were subsequently issued for the arrests of 11 suspects, one of them Mr Abdulsatopa. Some other suspects had been earlier arrested.

Mr Abdulsatopa was initially charged with illegal assembly, having military-grade explosives in possession without permission and setting them to explode, and attempted arson in connection with the two blasts at the Patong beach of Phuket.

Source: Bangkok Post

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