Feeds

FBI doubts cellphone terror scheme

Nuts to Barney Fife

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

Update The FBI has expressed reservations about the alleged cellphone terror plot uncovered by a Wal-Mart cashier working with small-town cops in Michigan, which we reported recently.

The purchase of an unusually large number of TracFones at a Wal-Mart store led to terrorism-related felony charges against three men of Middle-Eastern descent in the town of Caro, Michigan.

The men, Adham Abdelhamid Othman, Louai Abdelhamied Othman, and Maruan Awad Muhareb, said they intended to re-sell the phones at a profit, but the local police imagined that the phones were meant to detonate explosive devices with which the Mackinac Bridge was to be destroyed.

The FBI said Monday that it had no information to indicate that the men in custody had any ties to terrorist organisations, the Associated Press reports. Nevertheless, the local police and prosecutors seem persuaded that they've foiled a dastardly plot, and appear prepared, for now, to go through with the prosecutions.

Additionally, photos of the five-mile long Mackinac Bridge were found in a digital camera belonging to one of the suspects, prompting local authorities to imagine it was a target.

A lawyer defending the men told the AP that the photos were tourist snapshots taken while the men were stuck in traffic. "That's what people do when they see a tourist attraction: they take pictures," the wire service quotes him as saying.

Meanwhile, in Washington County, Ohio, two other men of Middle-Eastern descent have been cleared of terrorism charges after also being discovered with a large cache of pre-paid cell phones. Prosecutor James Schneider said there was too little evidence that Ali Houssaiky and Osama Sabhi Abulhassan, of Dearborn, Michigan, were affiliated with any terrorist outfits. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
'Kim Kardashian snaps naked selfies with a BLACKBERRY'. *Twitterati gasps*
More alleged private, nude celeb pics appear online
Home Depot ignored staff warnings of security fail laundry list
'Just use cash', former security staffer warns friends
Hackers pop Brazil newspaper to root home routers
Step One: try default passwords. Step Two: Repeat Step One until success
UK.gov lobs another fistful of change at SME infosec nightmares
Senior Lib Dem in 'trying to be relevant' shocker. It's only taxpayers' money, after all
Who.is does the Harlem Shake
Blame it on LOLing XSS terroristas
Snowden, Dotcom, throw bombs into NZ election campaign
Claim of tapped undersea cable refuted by Kiwi PM as Kim claims extradition plot
Freenode IRC users told to change passwords after securo-breach
Miscreants probably got in, you guys know the drill by now
THREE QUARTERS of Android mobes open to web page spy bug
Metasploit module gobbles KitKat SOP slop
BitTorrent's peer-to-peer chat app Bleep goes live as public alpha
A good day for privacy as invisble.im also reveals its approach to untraceable chats
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.