Brutal Acid Attack Shocks the UK; Suspect Still on the Loose

A brutal chemical attack against a woman and her two children in the United Kingdom is currently under investigation after a man, believed to have been in a relationship with the victim, threw a highly corrosive, alkaline liquid substance at the woman.

The 31-year-old victim, along with her daughters, aged eight and three, were taken to the hospital to receive medical attention after a man injured them with a “very strong concentrated corrosive substance” in Clapham, south London on January 31st.

Emergency services were called to Lessar Avenue in Clapham at 7:25 PM to respond to the attack. Aside from the victim and her two daughters, three women - two in their 30s and one in her 50s, were taken to the hospital for minor burns. Five police officers who responded and helped the victims after the attack were also treated for minor injuries. A man in his 50s who came to help also sustained minor injuries but declined hospital treatment.

Authorities said that while the woman and her three-year-old daughter were in stable condition and the injuries they sustained in the attack were not life-threatening, they could be life-changing. It may take some time before the hospital staff can determine how serious they could be.

The woman, who is too ill to speak to the authorities about the incident, remains sedated in the hospital, and she could lose sight in her right eye due to her injuries. Her daughters were discharged after receiving treatment.

Police are still searching for the suspect, identified as 35-year-old Abdul Shokoor Ezedi, more than a week after the incident took place. Authorities said the suspect, who is believed to be a refugee from Afghanistan, was last seen crossing the Chelsea Bridge at 11:27 pm.

Commander Jon Savell of London’s Metropolitan Police said the extensive manhunt for Ezedi was “an incredibly high-priority attempted murder investigation.” He also noted that a potential motive for Ezedi to douse a corrosive liquid substance on the woman and her two children could have been a relationship that had broken down. Shannon Christi, a bus driver who helped the victims, felt that the suspect “definitely” knew the victims. 

Since the attack occurred on January 31st, the suspect remains at large, and the investigation into the incident continues. Detectives and police officers leading the search for Ezedi believe he is either dead, partially due to the potentially fatal significant facial injuries he also sustained during the chemical attack, harbored from capture, or already smuggled out of the country.

Questions are now being asked as to why Ezedi, who arrived in the UK hidden in a lorry in 2016, was granted asylum in the country despite his convictions. His request for asylum was denied twice before successfully appealing against the rejection after he claimed he converted to Christianity.

Ezedi, who was not the father of the two children he doused with the alkaline liquid during the attack, was convicted of two sexual offenses in 2018 but was allowed to stay in the country because his crimes were not severe enough to be considered grounds for deportation. 

As of the writing of this article, the suspect remains on the loose. A man was arrested on suspicion of assisting Ezedi, and armed police raided two addresses in North Tyneside on February 8th, including where he worked, as part of the wider manhunt in pursuit of the suspect. The Met is offering a £20,000 reward for anyone with information that could lead to his arrest.

If you live in the United Kingdom and have seen Ezedi, do not hesitate to call 999. You may also call 0207 175 2784 if you have information about his whereabouts.

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