Oh, wait – did I say Mennonite IED plan? I meant ISIS. Apologies for the mix-up. Could happen to anyone, really.
This happened at the end of the July but I just heard about it today. Australian authorities arrested several Muslim guys for planning to get an IED onto a passenger plane and to release poison gas in public.
Police describe twin terror plots, one involving the bombing of a passenger plane and the other a potential poison gas attack, as the “most sophisticated” ever attempted on Australian soil.
A senior ISIS commander sent parts — including weapons-grade explosives — by air cargo from Turkey intending to build an improvised explosive device, Australian Federal Police Deputy Commissioner National Security Michael Phelan said during a press conference Friday.
The other scheme involved a plan to release a toxic gas in public that was foiled when the accused couldn’t produce the deadly gas.
…The would-be attackers planned to place the IED on an Etihad Airways flight on July 15 but “at no stage did the IED breach airline security,” the Australian Federal Police’s Phelan said.
One of the suspects planned to plant the IED on his brother, who was unaware of his role in the planned attack, Phelan said. The brother is currently abroad, and there are no plans to arrest himAccording to Phelan, the device didn’t get past the airline’s check-in desk, and a subsequent test of airport security using a dummy device was performed, resulting in the decoy also being found. Phelan said the device was in luggage due to be checked in, rather than carry-on baggage.Seven News reported that police had found parts of a meat grinder at the suspects’ home, which they suspect was to be used to carry the explosives aboard the plane.…The second terror plot in which the two men have been charged in connection with involved an attempt to create a “improvised chemical dispersion device” to release hydrogen sulfide, Phelan said.
It is suspected the device would have been used to disperse the toxic chemical in “closed spaces, potentially public transport.”However, there is “no information at all to suggest” the device would be used on an airplane, Phelan said.Hydrogen sulfide is highly toxic, and it has a particular smell, Ian Musgrave, a molecular pharmacologist and toxicologist at the University of Adelaide, told CNN. When inhaled, the gas can cause respiratory paralysis and death. It can be made with high-school laboratory equipment, but a large amount of the compound is needed to be effective.Concentrations of more than 500 parts per million (ppm) of hydrogen sulfide can result in asphyxia, Musgrave said. Concentrations of 700 ppm will result in death if not rescued promptly, he said.