The Courier-Mail

Cops grab bomber reward Thai police cash in after arrest for terror attack

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BANGKOK: Thai police have awarded themselves a three million baht, or $84,000, reward offered to the public for tips leading to the arrest of suspects in Bangkok’s deadly bombing after a man was arrested over the weekend in an apartment containing bombmaking equipment.

National police chief Somyot Poompanmou­ng said he was taking the unusual step of giving the reward to the police force both to motivate his officers and to show that Thailand’s police officers (pictured) were good at their job.

“This money should be given to officials who did their job,” he said at a news conference as aides brought out stacks of 1000 baht notes.

On Saturday, police arrested a foreigner who they say was allegedly involved in the August 17 bombing at Bangkok’s Erawan Shrine that killed 20 people. The man was arrested at an apartment on the outskirts of Bangkok where police seized bombmaking materials. He is in military custody and has not yet been charged.

“This arrest, I confirm, is due purely to the work of police,” Mr Somyot said, denying news reports that police had acted on tips.

Since the bombing, police have faced criticism for their handling of the investigat­ion and sending contradict­ory messages to the public.

Thai police say they are seeking two new suspects – a Thai woman and a foreign man of unknown nationalit­y – in the widening investigat­ion.

The police released a photo o of the woman’s Thai identifi- cation card and a sketch of the e man in a televised announceme­nt yesterday. The woman is described as wearing a black k headscarf but there has no o mention of her religion.

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