The second suspect arrested in connection with last month’s Bangkok bombings is not the prime suspect seen in yellow T-shirt on surveillance footage at the Erawan Shrine before the blast, Thai police spokesman Pol Lt General Prawut Thavornsiri said on Saturday (5 Sept 2015).
Citing a DNA test, he said Yusufu Mieraili, who holds a Chinese passport, was not the person who left the bomb at the shrine that killed 20 people and injured more than 100 on August 17.
However, Prawut added that the man, who was arrested near the Thai-Cambodian border last weekend, was allegedly involved in making the bomb, based on DNA and forensic evidence.
Prawut said Mieraili’s DNA was not identical to that found in a taxicab believed to have provided a ride to the prime suspect on his way to the Erawan Shrine on August 17. It’s also not identical to that found on a 20-baht banknote used by this person on that day.
However, Mieraili’s DNA is identical to that on explosive containers found at an apartment building in Bangkok and DNA found on a toothbrush and a nail cutter inside another apartment room. Hence he is believed to be one of the bomb makers in the two Bangkok attacks.
“At this stage, there is no evidence showing this man as the person who left the bomb (at the Erawan Shrine), but we believe he is one of the team’s members, and he holds a Chinese passport,” Prawut said.
Mieraili is facing charges of illegally possessing explosive materials but police have not filed charges of manslaughter against him, he added.