4 in Aussie plane plot planned to use gas or crude bomb
SYDNEY: Four men accused of plotting to bring down a plane planned to use poisonous gas or a crude bomb disguised as a meat mincer, reports said yesterday, with officials calling preparations “advanced”.
The men, reportedly two Lebanese-Australian fathers and their sons, were arrested in raids here on Saturday.
The Sydney Daily Telegraph said they allegedly planned to carry the device on board a commercial flight here to a MiddleEast destination as hand luggage.
It said the idea was to use wood scrapings and explosive material inside a piece of kitchen equipment, such as a mincing machine.
The Sydney Morning Herald also reported that a mincer was being examined, while The Australian newspaper cited sources as saying it was a “non-traditional” device that could have emitted a toxic sulphur-based gas.
This, it said, would have killed or immobilised everyone on the aircraft.
A magistrate on Sunday gave police an additional seven days to detain the men, who have not been officially named, without charge.
Police continued to gather evidence yesterday at the five homes raided, warning the investigation would be “very long and protracted”. AFP