Malaysia extends extradition process for Iranian suspect: Thai police chief

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BANGKOK, Feb 27 – Thailand’s national police chief Pol Gen Prewpan Dhamapong said on Monday that the Malaysian authorities have extended the extradition procedures for a detained Iranian allegedly involved with the Bangkok blasts as time is needed to complete legal matters.

The police chief made his remarks following Thailand’s move to seek the extradition of Masoud Sedaghatzadeh who was arrested by the Malaysian authorities in Kuala Lumpur while he was preparing to board a plane to his country.

Mr Masoud was the third suspect allegedly involved with the three explosions in Bangkok’s Sukhumvit 71 area on Feb 14.

Gen Prewpan said the extradition process is underway and that the Malaysian authorities had to seek further detention as the suspect has already been held for 14 days.

The neighbour’s concerned agencies are considering Thailand’s extradition request, but it will take time to review legal matters and procedures, according to the Thai police chief.

Thai police spokesman Pol Maj Gen Piya Uthayo revealed that Malaysia’s public prosecutor has already received the extradition request and relevant documents from Thailand, and that would forward the letter to the Malaysian court to decide whether the detainee will be extradited to Thailand or not.

In related developments, Thai Immigration Police commander Pol Lt Gen Wiboon Bangthamai said an Iranian couple earlier detained for questioning was released on Monday after investigators found no links to the suspects.

The couple, Rahimi Rad Iraj, a chef, and his wife Mahboobh Tasbehi lived at the Nasa Vegas Tower in eastern Bangkok’s Khlong Ton area, as had Iranian suspect Leila Rohani who earlier left Thailand.

Another Iranian, Madani Seyed Mehrded, 33, detained Sunday as police with a search warrant raided room number 21434 on the 14th floor of the same apartment, remained in custody.

Gen Wiboon said although the detainee denied his involvement with the Iranian group, he remained in police lockup as his visa had expired in September.

Police earlier said that they tracked Mr Mehrded from telephone information, found in the SIM cards of the first two suspects already in police custody — Saeid Moradi, 28, who lost both legs from his own explosive device, and Mohammad Hazaei, 42, arrested at Suvarnabhumi Airport while attempting to board a plane bound for Malaysia.