Bilal Mohammad says he was 'hired' to plant bomb

Bilal Mohammad says he was 'hired' to plant bomb

Bilal Mohammad aka Adem Karadag and other names admits to being the man in the yellow t-shirt, but now says he was paid by the mystery man Abdullah Abdulrahman with a promise of free passage to Turkey. (File photo by Patipat Janthong)
Bilal Mohammad aka Adem Karadag and other names admits to being the man in the yellow t-shirt, but now says he was paid by the mystery man Abdullah Abdulrahman with a promise of free passage to Turkey. (File photo by Patipat Janthong)

Suspected Erawan shrine bomber Bilal Mohammad, also known as Adem Karadag and Bilal Turk, says he planted the deadly bomb at the behest of another suspect, Abdullah Abdulrahman, who promised him passage to Turkey, according to his lawyer. 

Lawyer Choochart Khanpai was speaking after he re-visited his client at the 11th Army Circle Thursday after the court on Wednesday approved a police bid to have him detained for another 12 days.

The explosion at the shrine killed 20 and injured 130 on Aug 17, and another bomb went off at the Sathon pier a day later, injuring no one. 

The lawyer said his client, who communicated with him in English, is aware his offence carries a severe punishment and if he pleads guilty, his punishment would be eased. 

The suspect said he did not know what happened in the immediate aftermath of the blast because his room did not have any communication devices or television, Mr Choochart said. 

But once he saw pictures of the attack, he felt remorse for what he had done, the lawyer said. 

Mr Mohammad (Karadag) said he travelled from China, though he refused to reveal his hometown for fear that Chinese authorities could intimidate his friends and relatives there, Mr Choochart said.

He crossed into Thailand in the hope of traveling onwards to Malaysia with a final destination of Turkey, the lawyer said. Mr Mohammad's (Karadag) family members and relatives are all in Turkey.

The lawyer said he still did not know the motive behind the blast. However, his client told him that the man he identifies as Mr Abdullah ordered him on Aug 16 to plant the bomb-laden rucksack at the shrine.

His client had asked Mr Abdullah why the shrine was the intended target, but did not get a reply.

Mr Abdullah had told his client that if the mission was completed, he would contact people in Malaysia to seek his passage to Turkey, Mr Choochart said. Mr Karadag insisted that among the suspects, he only knows Mr Abdullah. 

Mr Choochart said he will visit Mr Karadag again in two weeks' time and try to contact his relatives in Turkey. 

Meanwhile, a police source said a foreign man seen in CCTV footage wandering around the Bangkok Military Court for about 10 minutes on Sept 25 without a permit has nothing to do with the bombings. 

The source said the man, wearing sunglasses and a backpack, is an American freelance photographer, adding he might have entered the building looking for a location to take pictures.

Sihanart Prayoonrat, head of the Anti-Money Laundering Office, said an investigation into the money trail of the suspects behind the blasts has found more people involved. Details are being shared with police and security officers, Pol Col Sihanart said, without giving detail.


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