A senior Turkish official said Akbarzhon Jalilov, the man Russian police suspect of blowing up a St. Petersburg metro car, entered Turkey in late 2015 and was deported to Russia about a year later because of migration violations.
Speaking with Reuters on condition of anonymity, the Turkish official said on Wednesday that while in Turkey Jalilov “was deemed suspicious due to some connections he had, but no action was taken as he had not done anything illegal and there was no evidence of wrongdoing.”
“However, the issue was not dropped and this person was sent out of Turkey in December 2016 for violating their visa and residency. In the end, a fine was given and they were deported with an entry ban,” the official said.
The terrorist attack on the St. Petersburg metro took place while Russian President Vladimir Putin was visiting the city on April 3, killing 14 people, including the bomber himself, and injuring dozens.
Jalilov, a Russian citizen who was born in the mainly Muslim former Soviet Republic of Kyrgyzstan, revealed no outward signs of radicalism, his acquaintances said, and no evidence has emerged that he belonged to any established militant groups.