Abdulgadir Masharipov, the man arrested for killing 39 people at a Turkish nightclub on New Year’s Eve, confessed to the crime Tuesday morning, according to Istanbul Governor Vasip Sahin. In the search for Masharipov, which lasted just over two weeks, police raided 152 addresses and detained 50 people.
Masharipov not only killed 39 people on New Year’s Eve, but he also injured 69 others with a long-barrelled gun. Many of those killed were foreign visitors, including citizens from France, Israel, Tunisia, Belgium and India, among other countries. The club, called Reina, was a popular night spot in Istanbul.
Roughly 2,000 police officers worked on the operation to track down Masharipov, along with help from police in local provinces. Police also examined 7,200 hours of surveillance camera footage. Police received 2,200 tips during the investigation, Sahin said. Masharipov was arrested Monday in an Istanbul suburb.
Here’s what we know about Masharipov:
- He’s married and a father. His wife was detained after the attack, but she said she was unaware of Masharipov’s connection to the attack. His four-year-old son was reported to have been with him at the time of the shooting.
- Masharipov carried out the attack “in the name of ISIS,” said Sahin. The Islamic State militant group had previously taken responsibility for the attack.
- Masharipov is an Uzbek citizen. He used the alias Abu Mohammed Khorasani Abdulqavi, and authorities suspect that he entered Turkey from the eastern border in January 2016.
- He was born in 1983, which means that he is either 33 or 34 years old.
- Police found and seized $197,000, a pistol, an air gun, two drones and ammunition from Masharipov’s apartment. One man and three women were detained along with him.
- There was no violence when police captured Masharipov, Sahin said. Masharipov confessed to the crime and did not try to shoot at police.
- Masharipov will undergo health checks before he will be interrogated.