Britain on Friday identified 19 of the 24 suspected terrorists who allegedly plotted to destroy US-bound planes and froze their assets.
TV channels in India reported that one of the arrested suspects was Amin Asmin Tariq, a Jet Airways employee. But Saroj Datta, Jet’s executive director, said: “We have no information about what’s speculatively being put out.”
Many of the names released by The Bank of England, which froze suspect accounts, were of Muslim origin. The suspects ranged in age from 17 to 35 years and at least one of them was a woman with a small child.
In Pakistan, five people were arrested, bringing the total number of suspects held there to seven. A Pakistani official said the five Pakistanis were believed to have been helping two British citizens taken into custody a week ago.
A US law-enforcement official in Washington said that at least one martyrdom tape was found during raids across England. The Guardian, citing British government sources, said that after the first two arrests in Pakistan, a message was sent to Britain telling the plotters, “Do your attacks now.” That message was intercepted and decoded earlier this week.
In London, neighbours identified one suspect as Don Stewart-Whyte (21) from High Wycombe, a convert who changed his name to Abdul Waheed. Ibrahim Savant of Walthamstow was a convert formerly known as Oliver. US TV network CBS reported that one of those arrested worked at Heathrow airport.
The Washington Post reported a member of the Muslim community tipped off British authorities to the suspicious activities of an acquaintance. Eventually, several hundred investigators monitored suspects on three continents, the newspaper said, adding that British officials believe as many as 50 accomplices may have been involved.