Today's Zaman - The suspect in the assassination of Agos daily editor Hrant Dink was caught in Samsun 32 hours after the shooting, when his father reported him to the police.

On Saturday evening, January 20, the lead suspect for Hrant Dink's assassination, Ogün Samast, was captured by gendarmarie with the murder weapon on him, while traveling from Istanbul to Hopa. Ahmet Samast, who works as a cleaner at the Pelitli municipality, went to the police after seeing his son's image on TV , and reported him. The police took Ogün under custody, as well as his close friend Yasin Hayal and six others. In 2004 Hayal was tried for setting a bomb at a McDonald's in Trabzon. As a part of a detailed investigation, police are checking 32 computers at the internet cafe the suspect used to visit.

In the first interrogation session, Samast confessed to the assassination. In hopes of furthering the investigation, police brought him back to Istanbul. Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan congratulated security forces at a press conference at midnight.

Istanbul Governor Muammer Güler told the Istanbul press that the assassin was caught within 32 hours thanks to solid evidence, including CCTV footage from security cameras at the scene. Criminal investigation results show that the weapon suspect used was a hand-made 7.65-caliber gun.

Five flights to Istanbul in last two weeks

Ogün Samast who confessed to the murder of Hrant Dink during the first interrogation session in Samsun, turned out to have visited Istanbul five times during the past two weeks, according to flight records. The suspect, who traveled via a private flight company, left Trabzon's Pelitli town three days before the assassination took place. The 17-year-old suspect left school in 2nd grade and turned out to be unemployed.

Played soccer at Pelitlispor

The prime suspect in assassination, Ogün Samast, played for the amateur soccer club Pelitlispor. Samast, who was caught with the assassination handmade-weapon in Samsun, was the same age as O.A. who assassinated the priest Santaro at Trabzon in February 2006. Samast's father and mother live separately.

Copyright © 2007