A top US security chief has warned that Islamic State militants are planning another huge terror attack on the same scale as 9/11. The acting Secretary of Homeland Security in the United States, Elaine Duke, warned that recent attacks involving knives and vehicles were to keep followers of the terror group engaged. But she said that US intelligence suggested extremists are planning an attack involving a big explosion to cause maximum casualties.
She also said it was clear terrorists want to hijack planes to target civilians, mirroring the devastating attack in the US in 2001.
Ms Duke warned of the threat at an event in London (AFP/Getty Images)
The MailOnline reported that Ms Duke, speaking at an event at the US Embassy in London, said: The terrorist organisations, be it ISIS or others, want to have the big explosion like they did on 9/11 . They want to take down aircraft, the intelligence is clear on that.
However, in the interim they need to keep their finances flowing and they need to keep their visibility high and they need to keep their members engaged, so they are using small plots and they are happy to have small plots. Referring to a series of recent atrocities in which terrorists have attacked people using knives or vehicles, she said: Creating terror is their goal and so a van attack, a bladed weapon attack, causes terror and continues to disrupt the world but does not mean they ve given up on a major aviation plot.
Her warning comes after MI5 director general, Andrew Parker, said the UK faced its biggest terror threat yet.
Terror threat: Islamic state (AP)
The chief of the normally secretive organisation gave a speech warning that it was taking less time for terrorists to plan attacks as they could exploit safe spaces online to evade detection. And Ms Duke said the internet was providing the means for more home-grown terrorists in the US through the use of propaganda.
She added that one of the biggest threats to the safety of aviation travel was the free movement of goods and people between countries.
What we believe is that because of the movement of goods and people, we have to raise the baseline worldwide, we can t only consider our borders, she said. She said US officials have strong measures in place to prevent another attack but added: Terrorists are strong, they are adaptable and the terrorist threat is the highest it has been since pre-9/11 .
We have got to have every tool that s possible.
Almost 3,000 people were killed in the 9/11 attack when planes were hijacked and flown into the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington.
- ^ UK facing ‘worst terror threat in 34 years’ warns MI5 chief (www.standard.co.uk)
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A hotel security guard who was the first victim of the Las Vegas massacre people has spoken of what happened of the first time.
Jesus Campos was on duty at the Mandalay Bay hotel and was the first to confront gunman Stephen Paddock1 . Police have given a series of conflicting accounts of how events then panned out amid serious questions over the response time. The hotel has also come under scrutiny over their security arrangments.
Campos would appear to be the only person who can conclusively clear up the dispute. He was due to give a series of TV interviews last week but cancelled at the last minute.
On Wednesday he finally appeared on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” to give his first public account of how he responded to the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S . history. The guard told DeGeneres he had been called to check on an open stairwell door near Paddock s suite on the 32nd floor.
He found it was blocked by a metal bracket, and he called hotel security to send up a building engineer.
Jesus Campos speaks on the Ellen DeGeneres Show about the Las Vegas shooting (Image: REUTERS) He was joined by engineer Stephen Schuck who was also present (Image: REUTERS)
“At that time I heard what I assumed was drilling sounds and I believed that they were in the area working somehow,” said Campos, who was joined for the interview by the engineer, Stephen Schuck. Campos said he took cover when Paddock began shooting from behind the door.
I felt a burning sensation . I went to go lift my pant leg up and I saw the blood,” he went on.
“That s when I called it in on my radio that shots have been fired.”
Paddock killed 58 and injured more than 500 in the mass shooting (Image: Getty Images North America)
After he was hit, Campos said, he used his cellphone to call the hotel s security desk in order to keep the emergency radio frequencies clear. When Schuck arrived on the 32nd floor, Campos leaned out and he said, Take cover !
Take cover ! and yelled at me, Schuck said.
“Within milliseconds, if he didn t say that, I would have got hit.”
Las Vegas Sheriff Lombardo has come under criticism for the police account of what happened (Image: Twitter/@ABC) Paddock killed himself as police waited outside his hotel room (Image: REUTERS) Investigators have yet to establish what drove Paddock to carry out the massacre (Image: Internet Unknown)
Police have said that Paddock, a 64-year-old avid gambler, fatally shot himself before they entered the room. He wounded almost 550 people when he opened fire on an outdoor concert from his window, according to authorities, and strafed the hotel hallway with about 200 bullets.
Las Vegas police on Friday presented a third version of the timeline for the shooting that showed they responded immediately to the gunfire, and that Paddock shot Campos at about the same time he opened fire on concertgoers.
Two security guards have been jailed after staging a 7 million fake robbery from their own cash-in-transit van outside Heathrow Airport. One of the pair was found several hours later tied up and left by a roadside, with the van abandoned and the cash missing in a bid to make it look like the two men were victims. Loomis employees Mohammad Siddique, 32, and Ranjeev Singh, 40, were each jailed for six-and-a-half years after they were found guilty of conspiracy to steal at Kingston Crown Court earlier in October.
Another man, Rafaqat Hussain, who helped Siddique and Singh organise the heist, and was said to be “at the heart of the conspiracy”, was sentenced for 10 years and three months after pleading guilty in September to helping stage the robbery, launder the money and commit burglary. The money has never been recovered. During the trial, prosecutor Sandip Patel QC said the “audacious theft” was worthy of a Hollywood script and “carefully planned and executed”.
“It was an audacious theft carefully planned and executed and you may think it would make a Hollywood movie script, they would call it the ‘Heathrow Heist’ if anyone wanted to write a script about it.”
How the heist unfolded
On March 14, a security van was loaded with 26 bags of cash belonging to Credit Suisse at the BA cargo depot at Heathrow Airport. Siddique drove it out of the security gates of the depot with Singh in the passenger seat. He then stopped the vehicle to allow Singh to take what was claimed to be a toilet break.
Siddique then drove off with the 7million in cash. Singh waited inside the toilet block for some time before raising the alarm. He claimed he could not contact anyone earlier as he had left his mobile phone in the vehicle.
The security van was later found abandoned with its engine still running in West View, Feltham, while Siddique was found a few hours later tied up and left by a roadside. When questioned by police he said he had been contacted weeks before the robbery by an unknown man at his home. He claimed the man threatened to burn his home down and forced him to take part in the plan.
Mobile phones revealed conspiracy links
Although Singh claimed he left his mobile phone in the van before it was driven off, it emerged he had a second phone all along, stored in his jacket pocket, which he used to speak to Siddique while he was in the toilet. Mobile phone data was also presented by the prosecution to the court to show that Siddique had been in contact with his co-conspirators on the day of the heist and was directly involved. Secret recordings made by a device planted by police in Hussain’s car caught him admitting “I had all the cash, 7 million” and also heard him boast that he could buy any car he wanted with the stolen cash.
He said: “Mate it was a job, I f****** robbed 7 million.
“I want to lie low, I could buy a Ferrari, I want to chill for about six months, buy a couple of houses, flip them and make a bit of money.”
Sentencing the pair at Kingston Crown Court, Judge Stephen John told Siddique and Singh they “must now pay the price” after playing “for high stakes”. He called the staged robbery “a sophisticated operation which involved meticulous planning and execution”, in which Siddique and Singh “played (their) parts to perfection”. The court heard there are more people involved in the case that have not been identified.
Prosecutor Sandip Patel QC said someone with inside information would have been involved, Hussain knew that Siddique and Singh had been “assigned the Credit Suisse run well before they were officially told at around 7.15am that morning” after calling Siddique at 5.42am to make it clear that would be the day of the heist. A further man, Garry Carrod, was jailed for three-and-a-half years after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit burglary. He and Hussain, along with Hussain’s wife Razvana Zeib, both of Chadwick Road, Slough, organised a house they wanted to buy with their share of the 7 million to be ransacked in an attempt to bring down the price.
An 88-year-old woman was selling the house to fund a place in a care home, but after it was flooded and vandalised, with windows broken, her failure to tell insurers she was not living there at the time of the burglary meant they failed to pay out. Carrod, 34, from Taplow, Buckinghamshire, has 74 previous convictions, including one for conspiracy to steal vehicles with Hussain, who has 64 previous offences to his name. Hussain’s wife Zeib, 35, will be sentenced at a later date after she plead guilty to conspiracy to money launder and commit burglary.