Manhunt Ends With Body in the Thames

Police say they believe person pulled from London river is Abdul Ezedi, suspected of attacking ex
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 20, 2024 7:21 AM CST
Manhunt Ends With Body in the Thames
Abdul Ezedi.   (Metropolitan Police via AP)

London police said Tuesday they "strongly believe" that they've pulled out from the River Thames the body of a man suspected of chemically attacking his former partner and her two young daughters, leaving the woman hospitalized with life-changing injuries. The Metropolitan Police said the crew of a passing boat reported seeing a body in the water near the Tower of London on Monday afternoon. Detectives inspected the body after it was recovered by the Met's Marine Policing Unit and concluded it was that of 35-year-old Abdul Ezedi, per the AP.

Three weeks ago, police launched a nationwide manhunt for Ezedi after the attack in the Clapham neighborhood of London on Jan. 31 that involved a strong alkali. Images of Ezedi captured after the attack revealed he suffered significant injuries to the right side of his face. On Feb. 9, Met officials, having watched closed-circuit television images, said they thought Ezedi had probably "gone into the water." "Based on the distinctive clothing he was wearing at the time of the attack and property found on his body, we strongly believe we have recovered the body of Ezedi," said Commander Jon Savell on Tuesday. He added that formal identification by visual means, or via fingerprints, wasn't possible, given the time the body had been in the water.

"We will work with the coroner on other ways to complete formal identification, such as DNA testing and dental records," Savell said. "That may take some time." Savell said the condition of the 31-year-old mother of two has improved and they hoped to be able to speak to her as soon as she's well enough. He said she remains in the hospital in stable condition but is no longer sedated. Police said soon after the attack that the two children were not as badly injured as first feared. British media reported that Ezedi is an Afghan refugee who was granted asylum despite being convicted of a sex offense in Britain in 2018. Ezedi's asylum application was initially rejected, but he later was permitted to remain in the UK after claiming that he'd converted to Christianity, per the Daily Telegraph. The investigation into the attack is ongoing.

(More London stories.)

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