Istanbul police arrest Reina nightclub suspect

Posted at 5:00 PM, Jan 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-16 17:47:58-05

(CNN) — Police in Istanbul have arrested the man suspected of plotting the deadly New Year’s Eve attack on the Reina nightclub, according to Turkish news agency Anadolu.

The suspect, who has not been named, was arrested late Monday, Andalou reported, citing security sources.

The attack left 39 people dead and dozens more injured after a gunman opened fire in the early morning hours of New Year’s Day.

The suspect was captured during a police operation in Istanbul’s Esenyurt district, the sources told Andalou. The sources spoke on the condition of anonymity due to restrictions on talking to the media.

An intense manhunt had been underway for the suspect.

The nightclub was a glittering waterside venue frequented by Turkey’s wealthy secular millennials and international celebrities. Ortakoy, where Reina is located, is a vibrant seaside neighborhood that caters to a wide range of people, from the uber-rich who party at clubs like Reina to students who buy stuffed baked potatoes from vendors along the Bosphorus shore.

Around 1:15 a.m. on New Year’s Day, the gunman shot and killed a police officer who was guarding the front gate, then rushed inside, spraying gunfire. Revelers jumped into the freezing waters of the Bosphorus to escape the chaos.

CNN’s Merieme Arif and Deborah Bloom contributed to this report.