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Monday, February 21, 2011

Engineer earned £13m after fooling CIA that computer program can 'stop Al Qaeda attacks'

Washington, Feb 20 (ANI): The US government had paid over 13 million pounds to a computer engineer, Dennis Montgomery, after he managed to fool fooling the CIA that he had developed a software to stop Al Qaeda attacks.
Montgomery appeared so confident that he even managed to convince former President George W Bush that some passenger planes would be hijacked, which eventually led Bush to order passenger jets flying from London to be turned back over the Atlantic, the Daily Mail reports.

There was even talk of shooting down the jets because it was feared the 'hijackers' would crash them into U.S. targets in 2003, the paper said.

The information however, like many such in claims of Montgomery, had reportedly turned out to be false.

The paper quoted a former CIA official as saying that this incident made them realise that they were being taken for a ride and added: 'We got played'.

Montgomery was reportedly given contracts worth over 13 million pounds after convincing the CIA and U.S. Air Force that his software could detect coded messages being sent among terrorists. He also claimed that his codes had the capacity to figure out terrorist plots hidden in TV broadcasts made by the Arab network Al Jazeera.

Besides, he had also claimed that his software could identify terror leaders from photographs taken by aerial drones and detect noise from enemy submarines, and eventually 'save American lives'.

In 2008, he had even claimed of having information that Somalia terrorists were planning to disrupt President Barack Obama's inauguration in Washington, the paper added.

Despite the revelations, neither he has been charged with criminal offences, not asked to pay back the money. He is currently awaiting trial in Nevada on unrelated charges of passing bad cheques worth 1.1 million pounds to Las Vegas casinos.

The court documents that could prove that his software had failed to support his claims have reportedly been kept secret by the U.S. Justice Department to prevent embarrassment to spy chiefs. (ANI)

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