Sri Lankan man and ISIS recruit charged with plotting terror attacks planned to assassinate Malcolm Turnbull
A Sri Lankan man with alleged links to ISIS who was charged with terrorism-related offences allegedly planned to assassinate former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull.
Mohamed Kamer Nizamdeen, 25, allegedly wrote a list of names and locations he would target in his attacks, including prominent political figures and famous locations around Sydney.
The university staffer was arrested at UNSW’s Kensington campus, in Sydney’s south east, about 2pm on Thursday.
New South Wales police allegedly found documents ‘containing plans to facilitate terrorism attacks’ and a notebook that named a number of locations and individuals as ‘potential targets’.
Mr Turnbull was mentioned as a target, as was Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and former MP Bronwyn Bishop.
The Opera House and local police stations were also targeted in the document used in the preparation for a series of terror attacks.
There were allegedly graphic threats to assassinate the nation’s leaders, as well as Gladys Berejiklian and members of the public, Seven News reported.
‘From the documentation, we believe he would affiliate with ISIS,’ Detecting Superintendent Mick Sheehy said.
The diary allegedly referenced the affiliation with ISIS.
Officers were reportedly alerted to the threat after a member of staff found the notebook and handed it in to the police.
After the notebook was found, police executed a search warrant at his home on Defries Avenue, Zetland, about 2am on Friday.
Police allege a number of electronic items were seized from Nizamdeen’s home for further examination.
Australian Federal Police detective superintendent Michael McTiernan said the charges laid against Nizamdeen were ‘serious and significant’.
‘It is quite a significant document which requires further analysis.’
‘We have both psychologists and investigators looking at that document to try to interpret the intent and capability, but that is in essence the offence that is before the court.’
Nizamdeen, who is in Australia on a student visa, was employed as a contractor at the University of NSW and has allegedly travelled back to Sri Lanka and ‘other areas’.
He was also a poster boy for a series of promotional videos, supporting the university and it’s programs.
The Hero’s Program was designed to assist in ‘taking on the challenges imposed by a rapidly evolving workplace by equipping people with an innovative and entrepreneurial mindset.’
Police say he wasn’t on their radar whatsoever, and the arrest was enacted only through the chance discovery of the notebook.
The 25-year-old was taken back to Maroubra Police Station where he was charged with ‘collecting or making a document connected with the preparation for, engagement of, or assistance in a terrorist act’.
Nizamdeen allegedly worked with police in the past, in an attempt to improve community safety, Channel 10 reported.
Previous colleagues said he was a ‘nice guy, a little reserved, but really easy to work with.’
On his LinkedIn profile, he was recommended as ‘a highly dedicated, competent, responsible and passionate individual with strong work ethics and excellent interpersonal skills.’
‘I was fortunate to have someone of his caliber in my team,’ his mentor wrote.
Nizamdeen was refused bail to appear at Waverley Local Court on Friday, where the matter was adjourned for eight weeks.
He is due to appear at Central Local Court on October 24.
Police said Nizamdeen’s student visa was due to expire in Australia but he was in the process of applying for another one when he was arrested.
Authorities insist there was no ongoing threat to the community following the arrest.
Anyone with information has been urged to come forward and report what they know to the police.
Source: Daily Mail