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Noordin’s body to be sent back to Malaysia

“On Thursday, God willing, (Noordin’s) family will come here to take the body to Johor, Malaysia,” said national police chief Bambang Hendarso Danuri.

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Malaysian Noordin, a 41-year-old who led a violent splinter faction of the radical Jemaah Islamiah (JI) network was killed along with three other militants at the bloody end of a nine-hour siege in Central Java last week.

Police said earlier in the week they had decided to hand Noordin’s body over to his first wife in Malaysia, Rahmah Rusdi, with whom he had three children.

Two other women he had married while on the run in Indonesia had their request to access the body turned down by Indonesian police because their marriages were never officially registered.

Police also announced on Friday that three people who were arrested during last week’s swoop near Solo city had been officially named suspects, a legal move allowing them to be held for longer.

Long-running manhunt

Supono, alias Kedu, faces likely terror charges for assisting Noordin and helping in a foiled plot to blow up the home of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono with a truck bomb, police spokesman Nanan Soekarna said.

Another suspect, Bejo, faces charges over helping to shelter Noordin. Putri Munawaroh, the wife of one of the militants killed in the raid, also faces charges of sheltering Noordin.

The death of Noordin brought to an end an exhaustive manhunt for a man who led an organisation he once labelled “Al-Qaeda in the Malay Archipelago” and who was blamed for a string of deadly attacks.

He is believed to have masterminded the meticulously planned double suicide bombing of the JW Marriott and Ritz-Carlton hotels in the Indonesian capital Jakarta in July in which seven people were killed including three Australians.

He is also said to have been behind a 2003 attack on the Marriott that killed 12 people, as well as the 2004 bombing of the Australian embassy in Jakarta and 2005 attacks on tourist restaurants on the holiday island of Bali.