Abdulgadir Masharipov: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Abdulgadir Masharipov is accused of being the Istanbul Reina nightclub attacker who massacred 39 people in an attack claimed by ISIS.

The suspect was arrested January 16 in Turkey. Photos show the accused gunman with a bruised face and bloodied shirt.

The mass shooting in the Istanbul nightclub on New Year’s Eve injured 70 other people. Masharipov, a father and husband, is alleged to be part of an ISIS sleeper cell in Turkey.

Here’s what you need to know:


1. Masharipov Is an Uzbek National

According to BBC, Masharipov is a citizen of Uzbekistan, a former Soviet Republic that declared its independence when the Soviet Union dissolved.

Those murdered in the Reina attack included citizens from “Israel, France, Tunisia, Lebanon, India, Belgium, Jordan and Saudi Arabia,” reported BBC.

There were reports that the suspect shot people who were lying on the ground and paused to reload his weapon before changing clothes in a kitchen and escaping, reported the Herald Sun.


2. The Suspect Stayed in the Area of the Nightclub

Although his photo was widely broadcast after the attack, Masharipov didn’t go far.

According to the Washington Times, he “was arrested just 25 miles away from the attack site.”

The Herald Sun reported that the suspect is “a well-trained killer who had fought for IS in Syria and had gained weapons expertise there.”


3. The Suspect Allegedly Belonged to an ISIS Sleeper Cell

The Times reported that the suspect allegedly shouted “Allahu Akbar” during the attack, which he carried out with an AK-47 assault weapon.

The attacker was captured on surveillance video after walking into the popular tourist nightclub and methodically and randomly executing people.

Video also captured the first moments of the attack.

ISIS said the attacker “struck one of the most famous nightclubs where the Christians celebrate their apostate holiday” in claiming responsibility for the massacre, according to the Times.

The Herald Sun reported that the suspect is part of a “central Asian IS cell” and also went by the name Ebu Muhammed Horasani.

However, Hurriyet Daily News reported the attacker was allegedly motivated by money and was set to receive $150,000 for the massacre. The news site also alleged that an intelligence service it didn’t identify was involved.

According to Israel Hayom, the attacker “reached Istanbul from the city of Konya in central Turkey some time in December after being instructed by his handlers in the Islamic State group to carry out an attack on New Year’s Eve.”


4. Police Captured the Suspect After a Massive Raid on an Istanbul Suburb

According to BBC, the arrest resulted from a massive manhunt that led police to a suburb of Istanbul.

He was found in the Esenyurt suburb, even though there were earlier fears he’d fled the country.

Police knew where Masharipov was for at least four days but wanted to monitor him to track his contacts, the Sun reported.

Daily Sabah reported that Masharipov was allegedly staying in an ISIS “cell” in Turkey and was captured by Turkey’s Intelligence Agency (MIT) and Istanbul police.


5. A Friend Was Allegedly Sheltering the Suspect

The Sun reported that Masharipov was located in the home of a friend from Kyrgyzstan.

That friend and three other people were detained, Daily Sabah reported. According to the Herald Sun, they are from Somalia, Senegal, and Egypt.

Masharipov has a four-year-old son, who witnessed his arrest, reported the British newspaper. His wife and daughter were previously detained, the Sun reported, but Daily Sabah reported that his wife told police she had no idea he had terrorist sympathies or ties.