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the man who knew


2004 Updates to FRONTLINE's 'Timeline: Al Qaeda's Global Context'


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-Fahad Mohammed Ahmed Al-Quso

In May of 2003, the Department of Justice announced that Fahad Al-Quso, the suspect in Yemen whom John O'Neill's agents wanted to question, had been indicted (read the indictment, pdf format) along with Gamal Al-Badawi on 50 charges related to the USS Cole attack. If convicted, Al-Quso and Al-Badawi could face the death penalty. The May 2003 indictment came one month after Al-Quso, Al-Badawi and eight other Cole suspects had escaped from a Yemeni prison. Both Al-Badawi and Al-Quso were recaptured in March of 2004 by Yemeni security forces in the southern Abyan province. An American investigator has told FRONTLINE that officials are still not sure whether Al-Quso attended the Malaysia meeting and how much he might have known about the 9/11 plot.

-Khalid Shaikh Mohammed

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the alleged 9/11 mastermind who first appeared on the FBI's radar as a relative of Ramzi Yousef and a participant in the Bojinka plot, was captured in March of 2003 by Pakistani authorities working with the CIA. Media reports have indicated that Mohammed, who is now in American custody, has provided investigators with names of al Qaeda associates and new information about previous attacks.

-Riduan Isamuddin (AKA "Hambali")

Riduan Isamuddin, the chief of Jemaah Islamiyah who allegedly attended the January 2000 meeting in Malaysia, was arrested in late February 2004 by Thai authorities and handed over to the CIA. By the time he was arrested, "Hambali" - who was also linked to convicted Bojinka conspirator Wali Khan Amin Shah - was alleged to be involved in organizing a pair of nightclub bombings on October 12, 2003 in Bali that killed more than 200 people.

-Tawfiq bin-Atash (AKA "Khallad")

Attash, believed to be the mastermind of the USS Cole attack and a participant in the Malaysia 200 meeting, was arrested by Pakistani authorities in April of 2003 in Karachi. At the time that Pakistani police captured him, they reportedly found 330 pounds of high explosives that they said was part of a plot to blow up the U.S. consulate in Karachi. According to Time Magazine, bin Attash was arrested with Ali Abd al-Aziz, a man accused of wiring money to some of the 9/11 hijackers and reportedly a nephew of Khalid Sheik Mohammed and a first cousin of 1993 World Trade Center bomber Ramzi Yousef. Bin Attash is now in United States custody.

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