Security forces in Alexandria on Wednesday arrested a man suspected of having murdered a Coptic alcohol merchant. The suspect was identified based on graphic footage from CCTV camera that had caught the incident, the state-run newspaper Al-Ahram reported.
The defendant was arrested while he was hiding in the Bakous suburb of Alexandria, and currently is being subjected to heavy investigative operations, Al-Ahram added.
The murder occurred on Tuesday when Youssed Lamaei, a Coptic alcohol merchant in the suburb of Sidi Beshr in Alexandria, was murdered by an unidentified man while he sat in front of his store. Security cameras in the store caught the incident on tape.
The investigation is still ongoing and the motive behind Lamaei’s murder is still unknown. In the CCTV footage a bearded man wearing a yellow coat and carrying a knife can be seen walking up behind Lamaei. The assailant took the knife to Lamaei’s throat, at which point the victim attempted to escape before bleeding out.
According to eyewitness testimonies published by several local media outlets, Lamaei and his family had no known enemies or feuds. One of his sons had reportedly chased after the murderer, but was unable to catch him.
However, speculation on the motives behind the murder point to sectarianism.
“The family of the slaughtered Coptic citizen asserts that there are no disputes between him and the defendant, the Alexandria-based lawyer Joseph Malak told Daily News Egypt on Wednesday. “They had in fact never seen that man before, and we can assume that the motives behind the incident are tied to extremism.”
Lamaei’s son expressed his grief on Facebook, however did not speculate on the possible motives behind his father’s murder.