ISIS in Australia. Man guilty of plane bomb plot involving meat grinder

May 1, 2019 | Brainwave Science

ISIS in Australia

ISIS in Australia. Man guilty of plane bomb plot involving meat grinderSITUATION

A 51-year-old man named Khaled Khayat has been convicted in Australia of plotting to blow up a flight on behalf of the Islamic State (IS) group using a bomb hidden inside a meat grinder. Khayat conspired to bring down the Etihad flight from Sydney to Abu Dhabi in July 2017, a jury has ruled. He had pleaded not guilty. The plot was aborted when a bag holding the bomb was too heavy to be checked in at Sydney Airport, local media said. He can be sentenced to life in prison.

The plan was to blow up the flight carrying 400 passengers with military grade explosives concealed in the grinder. Police had accused Khayat, and his brother, Mahmoud, of also planning a chemical gas attack in Sydney.

“The jury this afternoon returned a guilty verdict for Khaled and is still deliberating in respect of Mahmoud,” a spokeswoman for the New South Wales Supreme Court was quoted by Reuters news agency as saying. Khayat’s lawyer, Richard Pontella, argued that his client had in fact been trying to prevent a terrorist attack. But a jury rejected his argument after three days of deliberations. Police said the explosives used to make the bomb had been sent by air from Turkey as part of a plot “inspired and directed” by IS.

CHALLENGE

If Khayat was able to import explosives into the country, then we can imagine what all the many ISIS recruits are capable of. Had it not been for airport security, the explosives could have made their way on the flight. ISIS has been defeated in their home territory. But they have supporters worldwide. They can be thought of as crocodile cells. Hiding in plain sight, these sympathizers can be activated within weeks and months. There is no place which is safe, going by the recent terror attacks at unsuspected places like Sri Lanka and Christchurch.

Terror has a new face and its members are much harder to identify. They communicate using encrypted messaging and exchange information on the dark web. They are no longer a group of cave-dwelling guerilla fighters. The ISIS uses modern technology and has the support of people from all types of communities. The counter-terrorism agencies are scrambling to gather intelligence before further attacks take place. Cases like that of Khayat’s take years to solve. Keeping the massive backlog of cases across the board, there is a desperate requirement of efficiency in the investigation.

The methods employed today by the investigators are not fool-proof. The outcome of a polygraph test is dependant on to the opinion of the polygraphist. The test of a person, conducted by two different polygraphists, can yield different results. Besides, DNA and Fingerprints are usable in a very limited number of cases. Handling of the evidence is tedious and results take a long time to arrive. There is need for an all-inclusive method which is applicable to maximum number of scenarios and cases.  It must be able to give quick results which can be trusted. This objectivity will help make the judgement process faster as well.

People across the world fear the process of interrogation, it is synonymous with coercion and torture. Anybody being interrogate will tend to clam up and tend to not reveal much, whether they are guilty or not. This bottleneck must be closed. Is there a way with which critical information can be gathered without causing trauma and mistrust?

WHY ICOGNATIVE?

Such a technology indeed exists and is ready for deployment across the world. It has wide applications in the field of national security, immigration crimes, counterterrorism, counterintelligence, border security, human and drug trafficking, insurance fraud, financial fraud, cybercrime, law enforcement.

A company based in Massachusetts, USA, called Brainwave Science has come up with a revolutionary technology called iCognative which can help the investigators get the guilty punished and get the innocent exonerated. It detects the presence or absence of crime-related information in the brain of a test subject. This helps to shorten the list of likely perpetrators. Now the investigators can focus on a narrower group of suspects who are more likely to have committed the crime. The suspects who are familiar with details of the planning and/or execution of the crime are more likely to be the real culprits. This knowledge that such information is present in the brain of a subject is useful only if it is accurate and reliable.

The power of iCognative lies in the fact that it is 99.9% accurate in its results. It is reliable and never reports any false positives or any false negatives. An innocent person will not be reported as ‘information present’ and vice versa.

Polygraph or lie-detector tests can be fooled and are subjective in nature. This is highly unfair to the test subject and may lead to wrong prosecutions. iCognative analyzes the brain response of the test subject when crime-related stimuli (images, words, and phrases) are shown to him or her. Here the test administrator cannot influence the test and does not exchange any word during the test. Thus iCognative is objective, fair and non-invasive. There is no need to coerce the suspect and put him or her through any torture.

It is the aim of Brainwave Science to eliminate torture and human suffering from the process of investigation and interrogation.

In iCognative testing, a test subject is shown stimuli for about 45 minutes while a headset records their brain’s responses to each stimulus. These stimuli are related to the specific crime being investigated. The system can ‘read’ their brain and detect if they are already familiar with a stimulus. If it is a detail which only a planner or the executor of the crime could know, then the suspect is likely to be the perpetrator. The headset and a portable computer are operated by a test administrator. The test results are available immediately and thus this system constitutes a powerful and portable screening tool.

The stimuli which can be used in the iCognative test of the suspects can be details of the dates and times of the detonation of the devices, details of the buildings which were targeted in the explosions, confidential details of similar incidences can be used to identify if they belong to a certain organization or have incriminating knowledge of previous crimes. iCognative can easily identify if the suspects possess IED/bomb making knowledge. If they have been radicalized or are a part of a sleeper cell, this can be identified too. All in all, iCognative is an invaluable tool which every investigative agency must have in its arsenal. Surprisingly, iCognative can help in 85-90% of all criminal and civil cases. Contrast this with the applicability of DNA and fingerprints, because such evidence is uncovered in merely 1-2% of all cases.

The stimuli which can be used to screen terror agents are details about the anthem, insignia, and flag of the terror group, names, and details of known terror agents to establish links, IED/EOD bomb-making technology, propaganda material, etc.

Only by using iCognative, the Australian Government can interrogate and screen suspects better to avert the next tragedy from happening. It can come up with reliable intelligence without using much force, saving money and manpower. This solution from Brainwave Science can yield quick and transformative results, which is exactly what is needed to crack down on weapons smuggling, illegal immigration, and terrorism in Australia.

Main Source: BBC

Image Source: BBC 

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