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Shooting suspect's DNA matches, say Paris prosecutors

Paris prosecutors say the DNA of a suspect arrested over two gun attacks on media organizations matches samples found at the crime scenes. The man was arrested late Wednesday after a major manhunt.

French Interior Minister Manuel Valls identified the suspect as Abdelhakim Dekhar who was jailed in 1998 for four years for his role in a 1994 murder spree that cost the lives of three policemen and a taxi driver.

Agnes Thibault-Lecuivre, a spokeswoman for the French prosecutor's office, said the suspect was arrested in an underground parking lot in Bois-Colombes, 10 kilometers (6 miles) north of Paris.

The man appeared heavily medicated when he was detained, she said.

"Everything suggests that he tried to commit suicide," said Valls, who added that the suspect's motive for the shootings remained unknown.

Police said the suspect was taken to a Paris region hospital and was under medical care.

Prosecutors said the suspect was not immediately in a position to be questioned.

Newspaper targeted

Early on Monday, the suspected gunman critically wounded a photographer during a shooting at the leftwing Liberation newspaper. He is believed to have then fired several shots outside the Societe Generale bank in the La Defense business district, but hit no one.

He reportedly then hijacked a car and forced the driver to take him near the Champs Elysees avenue in the city center before disappearing.

Last Friday, the same man is believed to have stormed the BFMTV 24-hour news channel's Paris headquarters, where he briefly held an editor at gunpoint before rushing out.

Police on Tuesday released a photo of the suspect, a normal-sized white male believed to be between the age of 35 and 45, receiving hundreds of calls from potential witnesses. The series of shootings set off a major manhunt.

Ipj/jr (AFP, dpa, Reuters )