Dutch media report that the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had helped authorities in the Netherlands to apprehend 24-year-old Abdulkadir Ü. after he discussed plans to use drones in a terror attack on New Year’s Eve in Paris in online chatrooms. The suspected drone terrorist was arrested late last year after the FBI tipped off the Dutch police.

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Suspected drone terrorist apprehended

The Dutch website Crimesite reports that court documents show that the FBI alerted the police in the Netherlands about Abdulkadir Ü.’s plans to use unmanned aircraft to launch a drone terror attack in Paris on New Year’s Eve in 2018.

The suspect shared information in online chatrooms about unmanned aircraft and how to weaponize them. He also downloaded videos of beheadings and executions.

The suspect attended Dutch technical university Technische Universiteit Delft, which would potentially make him capable of modifying drones to launch said attacks.

He had planned to travel to the French capital with a group of 15 people to launch the drone attacks during the New Year’s celebrations because “there would be a lot of noise.” The fireworks in Paris would provide cover for the planned drone attacks and would make the shots and explosions less noticeable.

Whether such a drone terror attack would have taken place is unclear. Abdulkadir Ü. was apprehended at his work, and he had not made any arrangements to travel to the French capital at that time. During a search of his home, no weapons or explosives were found.

Dutch authorities view Abdulkadir Ü. as an Al-Qaida member who allegedly traveled at least once to Syria. He is currently incarcerated in a special terrorist section of the penitentiary in Vught, the Netherlands.

Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf reports that drone-expert and researcher Kay Wackwitz warned about unmanned aircraft being used for attacks:

Western civilization is quite defenseless against a drone terror attack, with, for instance, explosives or espionage.

In previous posts on DroneDJ, we have seen how drones have been used in the Middle East to launch drone attacks. Also, government officials have expressed concerns about similar attacks taking place in the U.S.

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