Malaysian teen learnt to make bombs 'from Net'

The young suspect was one of three men arrested last week for their plot to attack the Better Beer Festival in Kuala Lumpur and other targets in the Klang Valley.
The young suspect was one of three men arrested last week for their plot to attack the Better Beer Festival in Kuala Lumpur and other targets in the Klang Valley. PHOTO: THE STAR

KUALA LUMPUR • A 19-year-old terror suspect detained for plotting to attack a beer festival in Malaysia has bomb-making expertise which rivals that of an infamous local militant, according to a police source.

The young suspect was one of three men arrested last week for their plot to attack the Better Beer Festival in Kuala Lumpur and other targets in the Klang Valley.

A source said the skill and determination of the teenager, who was arrested in Kelantan with two others, reminded security forces of Jemaah Islamiah militant Azahari Husin, who masterminded the Bali bombing in 2002.

After the 19-year-old's arrest, police said they have seized five improvised explosive devices (IEDs) which were to be used on their targets, along with PVC pipes and instructions on how to make the bombs.

"The authorities believe the teen learnt how to make IEDs from the Internet," the source said. "But his attention to detail in constructing the bombs, down to the wiring and materials used, reminded them of Dr Azahari," added the source.

Azahari, who had trained to make bombs in Afghanistan, was killed by Indonesian police in a raid on his hideout in Indonesia in 2005.

A source said the skill and determination of the teenager, who was arrested in Kelantan with two others, reminded security forces of Jemaah Islamiah militant Azahari Husin, who masterminded the Bali bombing in 2002.

Police said the young suspect had been plotting with two others reportedly in league with the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terror group, but that he was believed to have been self-radicalised.

"Checks by the authorities revealed that he was not in contact with any known militant.

"However, he might have been influenced by the extremist doctrine practised by ISIS, which sees Malaysia as a secular nation, and must be combated," another source said.

Malaysian police chief Mohamad Fuzi Harun said on Tuesday that the bombs seized each had a blast radius of 30m.

THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 20, 2017, with the headline 'Malaysian teen learnt to make bombs 'from Net''. Print Edition | Subscribe