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St. Petersburg subway blast suspect had clean record — source

Jalilov had never been picked up for any violations whatsoever, according to a source
Flowers in memory of the victims of the St Petersburg metro explosion at Tekhnologichesky Institut Station Peter Kovalev/TASS
Flowers in memory of the victims of the St Petersburg metro explosion at Tekhnologichesky Institut Station
© Peter Kovalev/TASS

MOSCOW, April 5. /TASS/. Alleged suicide bomber Akbarzhon Jalilov who is suspected of carrying out Monday’s terror attack in the St. Petersburg subway had a clean record, a source in the law enforcement agencies told TASS.

"He had no criminal record and had never been ‘on law enforcement’s radar’. His name was not among extremists in the intelligence database," the source stated.

He added that Jalilov had never been picked up for any violations whatsoever, he was clean. "Upon becoming a Russian citizen, there were no problems with him. Citizenship was granted to him based on legally established procedures," he added.

Investigators are currently checking his contacts, including in social networks where he could be recruited by some extremist and terrorist organizations. "According to preliminary information, he could be linked to Syrian militants. Investigators are establishing whether or not he travelled to Syria to take part in hostilities. However, he could be supervised via the Internet where he could receive instructions on how to make bombs," the source said.

What we know about the suspect 

A Kyrgyzstan national suspected of carrying out Monday’s terrorist attack left the Central Asian country and moved to Russia at the age of 16, according to the deputy head of Kyrgyzstan’s intelligence agency.

The suspect, Akabrzhon Dzhalilov, was indeed born and lived in Osh, Kyrgyzstan’s second largest city. He received Russia’s citizenship at the age of 16 in the city’s consulate as his father was also a Russian citizen, Rustam Mamasadykov said.

"After that, Dzhalilov moved to Russia for permanent residency," Mamasadykov said.

On Tuesday, Kyrgyzstan’s Foreign Ministry announced that the suspected mastermind of the St. Petersburg metro blast was born in Osh in 1995 and was an ethnic Uzbek, but he never obtained a Kyrgyz passport.

Earlier, Kyrgyzstan’s National Security Committee told TASS that the suspect’s parents living in Osh were called up on Monday to the committee’s local department as part of the investigation.

The committee said the republic’s security structures were "closely cooperating" with Russia’s investigators to crack the case. A Kyrgyz law enforcement source told TASS that Dzhalilov’s relatives arrived in St. Petersburg from the Central Asian republic on Tuesday.

An unidentified explosive device went off on Monday afternoon on a subway train in St. Petersburg. The Russian Investigative Committee has labelled the blast a terrorist attack. According to the Russian Health Ministry’s latest casualty figures, the explosion left 14 people dead and nearly 50 injured.

Russian Investigative Committee Spokeswoman, Svetlana Petrenko, earlier said that the committee’s Chairman, Alexander Bastrykin, issued instructions to thoroughly investigate all circumstances of the tragedy in St. Petersburg and to check all information about the suspect, including to scrutinize his contacts for possible accomplices who are members of the Islamic State. 

Terrorists' recruiters

Six Central Asias have been detained in St. Petersburg on suspicion of recruiting individuals for terror-related crimes but investigators have no data on their ties with the subway terror attack perpetrator, the Investigative Committee told TASS.

"On April 5, 2017, as a result of carrying out investigative and search measures jointly with operatives of the regional branches of the FSB [the Federal Security Service], the Interior Ministry of Russia and special units of the National Guard, investigators have detained six citizens of Central Asian republics who came to Russia for earnings," the Investigative Committee said.

According to the investigators, they had been recruiting mostly nationals of Central Asian republics in St. Petersburg since November 2015 for terror-related crimes and involvement in the activity of the Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State terrorist organizations outlawed in Russia.

"Russia’s Investigative Committee will thoroughly check all the ties and the contacts of the persons detained but it should be noted at once that the investigation has no data on the detainees’ link and acquaintance with the perpetrator of the terror attack in the St. Petersburg subway," the Investigative Committee said.