Noordin Mohammed Top

Noordin Mohammed Top

Noordin Mohammed Top (born August 11, 1968) aka Noordin Mohammad Top is one of the most wanted men in Asia.

Born in Johor, Malaysia, he is alleged to be one of the key bomb makers for Jemaah Islamiya (JI). Top was reported by the United States Department of Justice's FBI to be "an explosives expert." The FBI also has reported him to be "an officer, recruiter, bombmaker, and trainer for the Jemaah Islamiah (JI) group."

Noordin and Azahari Husin were thought to have masterminded the 2002 Bali bombing, the 2003 JW Marriott hotel bombing in Jakarta, the 2004 Jakarta embassy bombing and the 2005 Bali bombings.

Noordin, nicknamed the "Moneyman", was an indoctrinator who was good in recruiting militants into becoming suicide bombers and collecting funds for militant activities. [ [ Bali bombings: 'Demolition Man,' 'Moneyman' key suspects] , Rediff India Abroad, October 03, 2005 11:43 IST]

Having long since been wanted by Malaysian and Indonesian authorities, in 2006, he also became listed on the FBI's third major "wanted" list, the FBI Seeking Information - War on Terrorism list. [ [ Seeking Information Alert for Top] ]

His aliases, as reported by the FBI, include: Noordin Muh Top, Noordin Mat Top, and Noordin Din Moch Top.

2002 Bali bombing

The 2002 Bali bombing occurred on October 12, 2002 in the resort town of Kuta on the Indonesian island of Bali, killing 202 people and injuring a further 209. The attack consisted of three nearly simultaneous bomb explosions. Initially, one detonated in the street in front of the American consulate in Bali. This bomb caused a slight injury to one person, and only modest damage. It was also packed with excrement.

A second bomb, hidden in a backpack, ripped through Paddy's Bar. The device was small and crude, but killed the backpack owner, likely a suicide operative. The injured immediately fled into the street.

Fifteen seconds later, a third much more powerful car bomb of close to 1,000 kg of ammonium nitrate concealed in a white Mitsubishi van was detonated by remote control in front of the Sari Club. Windows throughout the town were blown out. The explosion left a one meter deep crater [ [ Aspects of forensic responses to the Bali bombings] , ADF Health 2003; 4 (2): 50-55] . It is considered the deadliest act of terrorism in Indonesian history. The majority of the dead were foreign tourists, especially Australians, although nearly one-fifth were Indonesian nationals.

In October 2002 Abu Bakar Bashir, a leader of Jemaah Islamiah was charged in the bombing. In March 2005, Bashir was found guilty of conspiracy over the attacks in Bali and sentenced to 30 months prison. He was released four months early on 14 June, 2006.

2003 Marriott hotel bombing

The 2003 Marriott Hotel bombing occurred on August 5, 2003 in Jakarta, Indonesia. A suicide bomber detonated a car bomb outside the lobby of the JW Marriott Hotel, killing twelve people and injuring 150. Jemaah Islamiyah was again suspected of responsibility for the bombing. [ [ Marriott blast suspects named] , CNN]

2004 Australian embassy bombing

The Australian embassy bombing took place on September 9, 2004 in Jakarta, Indonesia. A car bomb exploded outside the Australian embassy at Kuningan District, South Jakarta, at about 10:30 local time (03:30 UTC), killing several people including the suicide bomber, and wounding over 140 others. Damage to the nearby Chinese embassy was also reported. Numerous office buildings surrounding the embassy were also damaged by the blast, injuring many workers inside, mostly by broken glass. [ [ Reuters article] ]

Jemaah Islamiyah again became suspect for this bombing. On November 5, 2004 four men were arrested in Bogor, West Java. Police announced that Azahari Husin, and Noordin Mohammed Top were suspected of being behind the bombing. [ [ Jakarta victims remember embassy blast] ] Husin was a member of JI who was an engineering expert and former academic with a doctorate from the University of Reading in the late 1980s. Husin was nicknamed the "Demolition Man."

2005 Bali bombings

On October 1, 2005 a series of explosions occurred in Bali, Indonesia, at two sites, in Jimbaran and in Kuta Town Square, both in south Bali. Twenty-three people were killed, including three bombers. Another two bombs exploded at warungs along the Jimbaran beach, one of which was near the Four Seasons Hotel, popular with Western tourists. [ [ (CNA)] ]

Fugitive trail

On July 21, 2005 Irun Hidayat was convicted of being an accessory by providing a house to Azahari Husin and Noordin Top.

After the October 2005 attack, a Philippine security official said that for months intelligence officials in Southeast Asia had received information that the al-Qaeda-linked Jemaah Islamiyah group was orchestrating a major strike, possibly in the Philippines or Indonesia, but were unable to uncover the plot's details in time to prevent it. [ [ no longer available] , The Jakarta Post Online]

Major General Mbai identified the chief suspect in the 2005 attack as Azahari Husin, who was thought to collaborate with the second suspect, Top, whose wife was sentenced to three years jail for harbouring him. [ [ Western tourists killed as terrorists return to bomb Indonesian holiday island again] , Telegraph, By Andrew Alderson, Colin Freeman and Nina Goswami, (Filed: 02/10/2005)]

Azahari Husin was later killed in a raid in November 2005.

On February 24, 2006, the FBI added Noordin Mohammad Top among three names to the Seeking Information – War on Terrorism list. [ FBI Updates Most Wanted Terrorists and Seeking Information – War on Terrorism Lists] , "FBI national Press Release", February 24, 2006]

On April 29, 2006 Top narrowly escaped capture after his safe-house was raided by heavily armed Indonesian police in Binangun, Central Java. In the altercation two terror suspects Abdul Hadi and Jabir were killed. [ [ article not found] , CNN]

In June 2006, it was reported that Noordin was threatening more attacks in video tapes recovered by Indonesian authorities, and police believe that he may have formed his own organisation outside JI. [ [ Singapore PM sees terrorism threat in southeast Asia] , Reuters India, Fri June 2, 2006 8:03 PM IST] ]


External links

* [ Rewards for Justice]
* [ FBI Most Wanted Terrorists currently listed web page]

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