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Tags Abdelbaset Ali al-Megrahi , Lockerbie bombing , Pan Am 103

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Old 23rd November 2009, 06:29 PM   #241
Caustic Logic
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I have to jet to work myself now, but Rolfe, awesome analysis there. If we have a simpler explanation that ties it all together I'm all ears, even if it means giving up on one of my big discrepancy possible conspirator lead things. It may just be that her stories are consistent, not that that makes them true, but it keeps us from following false leads any further.

Cheers!

ETA: That awesome post now buried last page was this, of course:
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
For immediate comparison, here's the relevant section of Bogomira's court evidence.

Quote:
Q Were you working the next day?
A Yes, I was doing the late shift the next day as well.
Q And did people at the airport speak about the crash?
A Yes, we talked a lot about this crash. In fact, that was virtually all that people talked about.
Q Did you decide to do something with the computer?
A Well, actually, it was quite late on. We've got -- we had a television in our unit. It's the news, I saw the images.
Q And did you then decide to make an inquiry in the computer system?
A Well, I was actually curious about that flight. A day earlier there had not been any problems, so I was interested to see how much luggage there had been. And so it was really because I was curious that I made a printout.
Q What did you make a printout of?
A I've got a KIK computer, and I made a printout of the plane from the day before, on the 21st of December.
Q Would you look at the screen with me, to Production 1060, image 1, please. Can we magnify to the top, please. Thank you. Do you recognise this document, Mrs. Erac?
A One moment, please. I've got to put my spectacles on.
Q Can we see the flight number?
A Yes. Yes, you can see the flight number.
Q And is it flight Pan Am 103?
A Yes, it's flight Pan Am 103, 1988, from December 21st was the date. It indicates the counter where the luggage for Pan Am 103 was checked in.
Q And is this the information that you asked the computer to print out?
A Yes, that's the information I wanted about the luggage which went through the luggage transportation system for that flight.
Q What did you do with the computer printout?
A Well, I took a look at it, and I was really surprised that so few pieces of luggage had been checked in whilst there were so many passengers on board. Generally, at that time of the year -- at that time, anyway -- Americans had much more luggage. I took a look to see whether all of the items of luggage came out of the system, the ones that had been checked in, and whether they were on time. And I saw that as far as the computer was concerned, nothing remained in Frankfurt.
Q Did you realise at the time that the Frankfurt flight had connected with a larger aircraft in London?
A No, I only found out about that later on.
Q All right. So once you had finished looking at the computer printout, did you give it to anyone?
A No. No. I didn't see anything problematic.
Q What did you do with the computer printout, then?
A No one instructed me to make this computer printout. I just did it for myself because I was curious about the way in which the flight had been dispatched, so I took a look at it, and then I kept it as a souvenir, one might say. I hung it up in my cupboard.
Q Were you due to take some holiday leave about this time?
A A few days later, I went to Slovenia. That was what I did every year; I went to Slovenia for the New Year.
Q Do you recollect when you returned to Frankfurt?
A I think it would have been around about the 15th of January, perhaps one day before that.
Q Did there come a stage when you told Mr. Berg that you had the printout?
A That was around a week later. When I went to Frankfurt again, I was on the early shift. It was sometime between the 20th and the 25th of January.
Q Thank you. Did you give the printout to Mr. Berg at that time?
A Yes, I gave Mr. Berg this printout, because I'd realised that there was actually no other documentation available.
Q Did he ask you to check the computer at that stage to see if there was any more information available?
A In the computer -- well, there was -- the data was there for one week, and after that they were written over. Mr. Berg just asked me to take a look in the archive in order to see whether there were teletype printouts. These were the things which came automatically from the computer. But I couldn't find anything.
I suppose in The Conspiracy Files she doesn't actually say she didn't make the printout herself. At a stretch, you could imagine that account starts at the same place as "I kept it as a souvenir." She printed it for her own information, to see if she could see anything odd about it, but when she saw nothing she volunteered nothing, because "No one instructed me to make this computer printout." She was about to throw it out, because that's what was usually done with printouts, but "on the spur of the moment I just picked it up and put it on the table. Later on I looked at it again and thought, well, I’ll keep this in memory of the people who were on the plane, and I put it in my locker."

I can just about make this the same story, especially if I postulate that Bogomira told the fuller version (where she made the printout out of curiosity the next day) to the BBC interviewer, but the early bit was cut for length. Could just be reportage that has made the court judgement and the Conspiracy Files version appear to be different.

Indeed, if you look at her first words ("We usually destroyed all the printouts, and I was just about ready to do that with this one"), it sounds very much as if she has said something else about "this one" prior to that. I suspect about how she came to make the printout.

So either she has been telling a reasonably consistent story because it's the truth, or she has stuck to more or less the same fabricated story all the time.

Rolfe.

Last edited by Caustic Logic; 23rd November 2009 at 06:31 PM.
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Old 24th November 2009, 04:45 AM   #242
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Alright, a consideration as simple as an editing choice changing the whole context; that I can dig. "We normally destroy all the printouts ..." only makes it seem this was a "normally" printout, but normal procedure could come into effect even for one you made specific. You look, nothing much of interest, you decide to destroy it like you would the automatic ones. But then you think again and keep it "as a souvenir." This could be, an intervening mood she didn't mention, or an honest embellishment years on. She was speaking for a video after all, not a trial with lives in the dock.

Would this be perhaps creative editing to entirely omit her decision to print and create an apparent discrepancy to lead people astray? : Whatever. Anyway, I don't see any reason to dismiss this as a viable explanation for the difference. I'll have some re-writing to do, maybe... (groan)

Quote:
But, "After the crash, surprisingly, the German police hadnít fully investigated all the luggage records at the airport."

Give us a break!
Surprisingly, the writers were sly here. Wording: hadn't fully investigated all... We know this is deduction at best. It would seem they must not have, since this printout was of precisely what the BKA should have gotten their own copy of, right off the computer, around Dec 22-25. Did they? we don't know. It seemed to be new to them when they got it a month later. The fact is, I'm sure the writers would say, this failure came down as most things do to a simple twist of fate.
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Old 24th November 2009, 08:03 AM   #243
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I'm still very uncomfortable with Mrs Erac's accounts of the events surrounding the printout, how it was exactly obtained, and her reasoning for, essentially, withholding vital evidence. It troubles me that her claim of ignorance as to the eventual significance of the record she had retrieved does not match her actions as detailed in her testimony, and she certainly does not, to me anyway, strike me as a character you associate with incompetence or blissful ignorance.

Conversely, she, by her own initial reaction and actions, would appear efficient, deliberate and most definitely, competent. Not only does she present herself considered when taking account that 103A's loading and departure had occurred during her shift that day (although given initial German media reports that it had been a Frankfurt flight itself that had crashed, this is understandable), but even more, the following day when "that was virtually all that people talked about", she was solely vigilant enough to not simply examine the records, but take her own printout (apparently unlike the BKA and the countless others throughout the airport involved in security and the baggage loading and screening procedures).

Presumably this was something she had the authority to access associated with her position with FAG, together with the knowledge flight 103A had departed during her shift, and simply retained this information as a souvenir or memento. (?) Maybe it's just me, but my gut instinct (although that's more likely my ulcer getting agitated!), together with the information that is known about Frankfurt systems, and her own testimony, implies that this story doesn't quite sit comfortably.

We know Frankfurt was on high alert after the discovery of the Khreesat's devices in Neuss, just six weeks previous. If anything can be gleaned from their operation 'Autumn Leaves', it's that the information regarding bombs disguised within Toshiba Radio's was circulated to the airport baggage screening operators, and I think it's reasonable to think that the arrests made in Neuss, together with the various warnings that were made known within airport and airline security employees, although perhaps not the exact details, would be disseminated among many different departments within the airport. Indeed, Mrs Erac, if working in an area which dealt with baggage quantities, tracking and loading, she should, given her capacity and her (noted in court) experience of airport computer systems, immediately be aware of the significance of any information relating to these very procedures.

I find her experience, application and evident aptitude on rescuing the 'printout', does not equate to her sudden symptomless coma-like state that became of her in the immediate aftermath. Not only of the crash of 103, but after the printout was itself obtained, not to mention the subsequent 3/4 weeks she was on holiday with the news and media full of reports about 103 all accross our screens. Although her date of departure for her holiday, it would appear, was after the Christmas holidays (25th/26th), but before New year, it is not conclusive. Far from the notion generally assumed that she left the next day, and therefore wasn't alerted to the posibility that any information about 103A's records had become imperative given it was now known that a bomb had caused the disaster. This is not to even mention the further 5/6 months the BKA delayed before releasing the devastating clue to the 'bomb' originating at Malta.

The document that was produced (1060) is also subject to further suspicion, given that we have no absolute proof as to when that 'printout' was obtained. Even if we accept the time was 1932 and was taken on December 22, as is claimed, showing information relating to 103 on the 21st, that is not verified or qualified by any clear time/date stamp on the master or copied printout as kept by Mrs Erac. We know she wanted the details of 103 for the flight out on the 21st, and printed this (or took the teletype) she stated on the 22nd, but, despite me being a computer ignoramus, why on earth a precise time/date would not also be detailed on the hard copy taken by Mrs Erac from the computer, is unfathomable.

Last edited by Buncrana; 24th November 2009 at 08:48 AM.
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Old 24th November 2009, 11:44 AM   #244
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I actually wrote this earlier, before Buncrana's post, but just managed to rescue it from a database error. It's taking a rather different line from Buncrana, and I'll just post it for comparison. I also totally see what Buncrana is saying.

For myself, I'm fairly comfortable about Bogomira's story, and that it's consistent both internally and psychologically, and between the different tellings, and with the physical evidence as produced.

She heard about the crash about 10pm on her car radio on the way home. (Two hours after the event.) She believed it to have been a direct Frankfurt to New York flight, from the information in the broadcast. She knew she must have dealt with the luggage for the flight.

She went back to work about mid-day on the 22nd, and talk was of nothing else. The thought of the luggage niggled at her, though whether she was really thinking about a suitcase bomb or not isn't clear. She just wanted to know more, to see if she could see anything unusual about the luggage records.

About 7.30, she used her own computer to print off the records for the loading of that flight (whether she had to transfer data to do that isn't stated). She had a look, and was struck by how few bags there were for a direct transatlantic flight just before Christmas. She checked to see if anything had been left behind that should have been on the flight, but found nothing. She saw nothing else of any note, and she was just about to throw the printout away when on the spur of the moment she decided to keep it as a souvenir - a memento of the people who were on the plane - and instead put it in her locker.

She soon learns that the reason for the small quantity of luggage was that only 49 passengers on the flight were actually going to New York, transferring to a larger plane at Heathrow and joining another 200 or so. So that solves that part of the mystery.

Nothing else seems to have happened for the next few days to remind her about it, or prompt her to come forward. "A few days later" she went on holiday to Slovenia, as usual, for the New Year. She didn't say whether she worked the week beginning 25th December or not, but it seems likely she worked at least part of it if her holiday was a New Year one. Also, since she didn't get back until 14th or 15th January, it's likely she worked until at least 30th December - a 2-week holiday is nice, 3 weeks would be a bit unusual. But even so, she mentions nothing about policemen ransacking the place and searching for deleted computer files.

She returns from holiday on about 15th January, working morning shifts, and about a week later it finally dawns on her that she hasn't heard anyone looking for baggage records relating to the flight. (I believe it was public knowledge by this time that the crash was due to a bomb in a suitcase, and that the suitcase had probably been introduced at Frankfurt.) So she goes to her supervisor and says something about it, and he replies "but the baggage list doesn't exist any more." She then produces the printout. Mr. Berg was "very, very surprised." Mr. Berg asks her to look in the files to see if any other printouts (which were apparently made automatically as well) were still there, but she found nothing.

Now this is perfectly credible, as far as Bogomira's actions and account is concerned. The printout doesn't seem to have been dated, but it has about the right time of day on it. Bogomira wasn't being massively conscientious, or trying to pre-empt the police, it was just private curiosity about the big news story she was connected to. And since nobody had instructed her to make the printout, and none of the bags was glowing in spooky green letters saying "unaccompanied and suspicious", she didn't do anything with it.

It's still possible the entire story is fabricated, in order to provide credible provenance for an isolated printout intended to implicate KM180, but we have no evidence for that.

It's still possible that Bogomira's story is true, but her printout was falsified while in police hands to introduce evidence of a connection to KM180, but subtly enough that she didn't notice (she even needed to put on her glasses to see it was the right piece of paper, in court). But again we have no evidence for that.

So we leave these speculations to one side.

What we do have evidence of is very very peculiar behaviour on the part of the police, and to a certain extent Mr. Berg.

Bogomira was on duty when the suspect bag went through the system. And yet nobody seems to have tried to interview her in the days following the crash, before she went on holiday. Indeed, she gives no account of any police presence then or any other time, when they should have been all over the place well before 30th December. Nobody was waiting to interview her when she returned from holiday.

We know that Jones showed up on Monday 23rd January, and says he found nothing. (He believed the police were not responsible for removing the evidence, because in that case copies should have been retained, however I think he is mistaken in this, on the basis of the police later being seen to be in possession of certain items that appear to have been part of the missing hoard.) He doesn't say who he spoke to or what explanations he was given.

Bogomira gives 20th to 25th January as the date she came forward with the printout. It seems possible this might actually have been prompted by Jones's visit. At last, some talk about someone looking for some evidence. But apparently he has been sent empty away? Perhaps I have something in my locker that might help!

Mr. Berg: But the baggage list doesn't exist any more!
Bogomira: Come and see what I've got.
Mr. Berg (very, very surprised!!!): makes lame suggestion about looking in the drawer to see if anything else might still be kicking about.

Am I the only one who thinks this is screaming "cover-up"!

I think it's suspicious of a concerted effort to remove all the documentary evidence relating to the baggage for that day (and maybe the days surrounding it, to make it more credible), with as little fuss as possible. I suspect advantage was taken of the fact that everyone would be on holiday at some point over the next two weeks to cover up the absence of a big, co-ordinated investigation, and instead simply get the evidence out of there with as few people as possible knowing about it. Christmas Day, which was a Sunday, may have been particularly useful.

That doesn't prove it was the police, but I think the absence of police officers running around demanding to know where the hell the data have all disappeared to, and the fact that later, the documents needed to make sense of the printout surfaced in their hands, suggests at least complicity.

This last bit is a kite I'm flying. I'd be grateful to anyone who'd do me the favour of trying to shoot it down.

Rolfe.
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Old 24th November 2009, 03:57 PM   #245
Caustic Logic
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Originally Posted by Buncrana View Post
I'm still very uncomfortable with Mrs Erac's accounts of the events surrounding the printout, how it was exactly obtained, and her reasoning for, essentially, withholding vital evidence. It troubles me that her claim of ignorance as to the eventual significance of the record she had retrieved does not match her actions as detailed in her testimony, and she certainly does not, to me anyway, strike me as a character you associate with incompetence or blissful ignorance.

Conversely, she, by her own initial reaction and actions, would appear efficient, deliberate and most definitely, competent.<snip>
Epic analysis! I can totally see this, and it's troubling. However to be fair 'suppressing evidence' may or may not be relevant. If she didn't know all other records would go "missing" she wouldn't have reason to think of this personal query as "evidence." She may have known what was up of course, but by her story she didn't know it was evidence so for internal consistency it pans out. A bit of an odd story in itself, the fact this became THE evidence just keeps casting a harsh light back on it.

I did agree with Rolfe earlier where she said the main thing coming out of this is the absence of/silence over the main records. This is unacceptable when so much is at stake for an investigation.
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Old 24th November 2009, 04:07 PM   #246
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Rolfe: first half, great summation. The last part about Berg and Erac is still a little iffy, but we're working from old memory.Anyway, I can buy it, rent it.

Second half, some grat points to consider. One I'd like to add to
Quote:
We know that Jones showed up on Monday 23rd January, and says he found nothing. (He believed the police were not responsible for removing the evidence, because in that case copies should have been retained, however I think he is mistaken in this, on the basis of the police later being seen to be in possession of certain items that appear to have been part of the missing hoard.) He doesn't say who he spoke to or what explanations he was given.
Again, unless I'm wrong, Pan Am kept their own records, and FAG all records for the airport and other lines. So it's possible there were two separate "hoards." The BKA produced FAG files only later on, and the printout. If Jones is right they were missing then, and haven't been presented since, and left no trace of anyone having seen them (deduction surrounds the loading of 103A), they may well have gone a different route off the stage. Do you have a reason that take is wrong?

Oh an on the printout, maybe it's just me but if I was visiting my family for the New Year having just touched history like that, I wouldn't keep my souvenir at work, I'd take it with me to to show. After all, it's not "evidence." Right?
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Old 24th November 2009, 04:54 PM   #247
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Originally Posted by Caustic Logic View Post
Again, unless I'm wrong, Pan Am kept their own records, and FAG all records for the airport and other lines. So it's possible there were two separate "hoards." The BKA produced FAG files only later on, and the printout. If Jones is right they were missing then, and haven't been presented since, and left no trace of anyone having seen them (deduction surrounds the loading of 103A), they may well have gone a different route off the stage. Do you have a reason that take is wrong?

I think you're right. Coleman touches on this (chapter 7 again).

Originally Posted by The Trail of the Octopus
More particularly, there were problems with the computer records and worksheets from Frankfurt. For one thing, they did not tally with Pan Am's own baggage records, which although questionable as to their accuracy, were at least compiled in good faith. To this day no one knows exactly how many pieces of luggage there were aboard the doomed flight or consequently whether they have all been recovered or accounted for. Nobody even knows exactly how many suitcases were in the luggage pallet that contained the one with the bomb - it was 45 or 46 - or how many of these were brought in by the feeder flight from Frankfurt. (The number was also thought to include not one but four unaccompanied bags.)

The BKA estimate that 'about' 135 bags were sent through to the baggage room below the departure gate of Flight 103A, some belonging to the 79 passengers whose journey ended in London and the rest to the 49 who were going on to New York. There were no records of luggage sent directly to the departure gate, nor of interline luggage taken directly from one aircraft to another, nor of bags belonging to first-class passengers.

Of the 49 passengers bound for New York and beyond, 28 began their journey in Frankfurt, and 21 transferred from other connecting flights. As with the other interline passengers who joined the flight in London, their luggage was X-rayed before it went aboard but no attempt was made to match baggage with passengers, even though it had already been established that the Semtex explosive in the PFLP-GC Toshiba radio bombs was virtually undetectable by X-ray examination alone. (Later on, it would emerge that the X-ray machine operator had been instructed to pull out any bag that appeared to contain a radio. According to his testimony, he X-rayed 13 [surely not? 135?] bags but none contained anything resembling a Toshiba radio.)

Of the 135 bags mentioned by the BKA, 111 had been logged on the Frankfurt computer and about 24 taken directly to the aircraft from three other connecting Pan Am flights. The list compiled by Pan Am at its check-in desks, however, showed not 111 but 117 items of luggage, and the discrepancy has not been convincingly cleared up to this day.

Although the 'discovery' of an unaccompanied bag from Malta was seized upon as a breakthrough in the investigation, there were in fact 13 items of unaccompanied luggage on the flight. According to the minutes of the fourth international conference of police agencies called on 14 September 1989, to consider the new Libyan link with the bombing, this cast 'doubt on the total reliability of hand-written entries of the baggage handlers on the computer print-out', which had indicated only one such item. Details of the Malta connections were discussed, 'and it was explained that the bomb need not have been brought on in Malta, but must at least have come from Frankfurt'.

As Hamlet remarked, well, well, well.

Originally Posted by Caustic Logic View Post
Oh an on the printout, maybe it's just me but if I was visiting my family for the New Year having just touched history like that, I wouldn't keep my souvenir at work, I'd take it with me to to show. After all, it's not "evidence." Right?

Depends on how much weight she put on it I suppose. Maybe she forgot.

I'm mildly intrigued by all these family visits - to the other side of the Iron Curtain. This was (just) before the whole thing collapsed, remember, and Bogomira had succeeded in moving from East to West 20 years before, when she was in her mid-20s. However, we have to bear in mind that she's from Slovenia, which was probably the most liberal and free-contact of the Eastern states - I was there myself (Ljubljana) on holiday earlier in 1988. So it may be of no significance. I have to say though, I didn't realise it was quite so easy to waltz from one side to the other prior to 1989.

Rolfe.
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Old 24th November 2009, 05:05 PM   #248
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As far as Bogomira goes, I can cope with the idea that she's on the level. Nobody instructed her to make a printout. It wasn't her job to do anything on her own initiative. (I'm serious, read Three Men on the Bummel and you'll see what I mean.) On that reading, she's just one more person who seems blissfully oblivious to the fact that this airport which was on high alert for a possible suitcase bomb at the time, has experienced a mysterious absence of both enquiring policemen and retained evidence.

The alternative is that this is all a carefully-crafted and credible story to allow a fabricated printout apparently implicating KM180 to be introduced into the evidence, even though all the flight baggage records are supposed to have gone to the big bit-bucket in the sky.

It's perfectly possible. It's the yin to the yang of my questioning of Gauci's story. It's either that, or the "mystery item" (which conveniently seemed to have some from Luqa but actually couldn't have) is just one more wild co-incidence in an incident absolutely stuffed with the things.

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Old 24th November 2009, 06:36 PM   #249
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Okay I've been giving some thought. Allowing the benefit of doubt to fall on the side of Mrs Erac, excuse me, or retrieve me, as I venture down what could be a rather deep, as Rolfe aptly puts, rabbit hole.

So, Bogomira returns from her holiday and is oblivious to the apparent lack of records recovered by the BKA and other interested parties during the first week after 103 crashed and the growing furore that is beginning to emerge, especially at Heathrow and Frankfurt Airports, over where, if and how a bomb had been loaded onto Pan Am 103.

For a couple of weeks she doesn't really give any thought to the 'printout' she had retrieved on Dec 22nd, but eventually realising the significance it might have, decides to admit this to her superior, who inturn advises she pass the document to the BKA. This is late January 1989.

Mid to late January '89, and we have the discovery of the scorched debris recovered from the area around the Kielder forest and Scottish border. As well as set aside in the recovery shed designated for 103 debris, it is passed to a specific area for items showing burn marks. This evidence is thought to have been sent to Rarde within the week of being logged. Late Jan 89.

During the following months nobody raises any issues at the lack of records at Frankfurt. Meanwhile the cut locks at Heathrow have been quietly filed away. However, in Spring 89, we have widespread reporting that evidence is at hand and confidently arrests are imminent. Iran, Syria and the PLFP GC will stand accused having duped a young man into unwittingly carrying the bomb in his luggage.

Little is heard of the charred debris found in January until May later that year, when Hayes and Feraday discover the fragment. As it happens, the fragment, yet to be identified, is linked to a timer made by a company whose owner has already made several statements to the Scottish Police and the FBI. The defector Giaka is on the scene and Bollier is the timer man with the links to Megrahi in Malta.

August and September, the clothing is identified as coming from Malta, and we have Mrs Erac's printout showing a rogue bag maneuvering it's way with stealth accross the Frankfurt system onto 103A, and ultimately 103 at Heathrow coming all the way from an Air Malta flight. Thurman meets with Khreesat, and Bollier claims he is visited by head of Swiss Police.

I'm slowly being drawn to the whole damn suitcase, it's contents, timer and printout all being coordinated and pulled together during that dead spot that appears to be from February thru summer 1989. Just the timer and the fragment weren't quite right. Yet.

I'm too tired now, pull me back out.
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Old 25th November 2009, 03:30 AM   #250
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No, I think it's a place we need to stay for a while to see if we like it.

There are a few problems and loose ends though.

For a start, Khalid Jafaar started his journey in Frankfurt. His luggage was NOT the Bedford suitcase. As far as I can see, the Jaafar theory and the Heathrow/Manly/Bedford evidence are either-ors.

Also, I have a bit of a credibility gap with the concept of such wholesale fabrication of evidence at such an early stage in the investigation. Baggage container AVW4041 really was blown up from the inside, and bits of it found on the ground on Christmas Eve. The snag about fabricating a whole suitcase and contents is that it might conflict with the real stuff that's also coming in. More than that, though, I'm not sure how they would have been able to figure out what to do, fabricate the evidence, and introduce it, all so close to the time of the disaster.

Longtabber was pushing this theory a bit (but without the background information to know how credible the idea was), and at the time it seemed to me to be a bit much to swallow. However, I don't think it should be dismissed wholesale.

If we're getting on to where these bits of charred clothing really came from, I think we should take it to the Tony Gauci thread.

Rolfe.
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Old 25th November 2009, 03:47 AM   #251
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Originally Posted by Buncrana View Post
Okay I've been giving some thought. Allowing the benefit of doubt to fall on the side of Mrs Erac, excuse me, or retrieve me, as I venture down what could be a rather deep, as Rolfe aptly puts, rabbit hole.

So, Bogomira returns from her holiday and is oblivious <snip> but eventually realising the significance it might have, decides to admit this to her superior, who inturn advises she pass the document to the BKA. This is late January 1989. <snip> and we have the discovery of the scorched debris <snip> nobody raises any issues at the lack of records at Frankfurt. <snip> May later that year, when Hayes and Feraday discover the fragment <snip> whose owner has already made several statements to the Scottish Police and the FBI. The defector Giaka is on the scene and <snip>

I'm too tired now, pull me back out.
Uh, Buncrana, that was just the official facts and evidence. You know, that prove his guilt? A rabbit hole would be some crazy story you folow into deeper paranoid delusion. Hey, wait... why do they seem so similar in this case? It's confusing!

Quote:
I'm slowly being drawn to the whole damn suitcase, it's contents, timer and printout all being coordinated and pulled together during that dead spot that appears to be from February thru summer 1989. Just the timer and the fragment weren't quite right. Yet.
Now THAT sounds fairly rabbit-like. And it's a direct reading off the same evidence pool the judges were looking at. Hmmm, you sure your investo-meter is calibrated correctly? I'm getting the same "error" on mine. [scratches head]
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Old 25th November 2009, 08:03 AM   #252
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Rolfe, You seem to have a good start on a timeline for what's happening at Frankfurt. Could you put that into a Frankfurt Airport page on the wiki.
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Old 25th November 2009, 05:49 PM   #253
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I can give it a start. My idea was to do a page per main topic (this one will do for a start) with as much detail as possible, and hope that others would populate it with any links I've missed. My bookmarks are in a mess and I'm not sure where all the factoids are located now.

It seems that "why did the evidence disappear and why do we not hear anybody asking questions about this" is by far the most interesting question in this respect. Showing that the orphan bag didn't have to have come off KM180, and in fact almost certainly didn't, is relatively minor. I think we've gone as far as we can with Bogomira, and that one basically winds up as she may well be entirely on the level.

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Old 26th November 2009, 06:24 AM   #254
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With regards to the examination and x-raying of baggage as it passed through the Frankfurt system. It would seem that Alert (Pan Am's security company) had alleged authorization had been granted to allow x-raying of baggage without a physical search at Frankfurt during 1988. From the link I posted earlier in this thread relating to the original Pan Am case in 1992. It would seem that not only was the testimony of the x-ray operator at Frankfurt dismissed at Zeist in that he would not have neccessarily spotted the bomb contained within the radio, but at the original Pan Am case, the equipment that was being used by the baggage screening operators was also excluded.

Quote:
184
[Pan Am] insisted that a bomb contained in a suitcase would have been visible on x-ray. In fact, the parties stipulated to that fact.

185
Majority Opinion at 821.

186
It is worth noting, however, how this stipulation came into being. After Pan Am was satisfied that it could use x-ray examination of luggage, it purchased for the Frankfurt airport the most expensive up-to-date x-ray machine on the market, the Astrophysics Linescan X-ray Screening System.

187
Q Does your company make a larger machine than this?

188
A This is the largest machine we make.

189
Q Does your company make a more expensive machine than this?

190
A No, sir.

191
Q At the time it was sold, was there a newer or more advanced state of the art machine than this?

192
A No, sir.

193
Tr. 5689 (testimony of Derek Kemp, an Astrophysics Company official).

194
Pan Am wanted the jury to see the machine and how it operated, and for this purpose it had the machine transported to the courthouse. For obvious reasons, plaintiffs' counsel did not want the jury to have the benefit of this first-hand observation, and he stipulated what an examination of the machine would have shown. Although Pan Am should not have been required to accept this stipulation in lieu of actual observation, see United States v. Gantzer, 810 F.2d 349, 351 (2d Cir.1987), the district court gave it no choice. At the district court's direction, the machine sat in the basement of the courthouse, alone and unobserved. The fact that plaintiffs' counsel objected to a jury inspection is evidence in and of itself that the district court erred in not permitting it.


Something that could be seen to also lend weight to Mrs Erac's account is also detailed here:

Quote:
229
Refutation of plaintiffs' supposition was permitted from Wilfred Borg, the general manager of ground operations for Air Malta, one of the few witnesses produced by defendant whose testimony was admitted:

230
Q Let me show you what we have marked as Exhibits HF-1 through HF-15 in evidence. (Handing.)

231
A Thank you.

232
Q Looking at those exhibits, Mr. Borg, have you ever seen them before?

233
A Yes, I did.

234
Q Would you tell the ladies and gentlemen what those documents are, the whole package?

235
A That is the flight file or the ship's papers for Flight KM-180, destined to Frankfurt in Germany on the 21st of December 1988.

236
Q When did you first see this particular flight file?

237
A I saw this flight file, the first time, in February '89.

238
Q What were the circumstances under which you saw the flight file at that time?

239
A Our office in Germany had received a request from the German police requesting us whether we had any passengers or baggage connecting to Pan American flights out of Frankfurt.

240
They said they were investigating this, they wanted this information in view of the Lockerbie incident in December, '88.

241
Q And what did you do with respect to their request?

242
A The request was passed along to me by our office in Germany.

243
I requested the manager responsible to keep these records, to give me this relevant flight file. I went through it and gave the relevant replies to the German police.

244
Q What were those replies?

245
A We had no passengers connecting on the flights out of Frankfurt.

246
We had no baggage destined to go in flights out of Frankfurt.

247
And, we had no unaccompanied luggage on that flight.

248
Tr. 5991-92.

249
Q. Now, sir, based upon everything that you've read and all the investigation that you did, are you able to tell this jury whether or not there was an unaccompanied bag on Flight 180?

250
A. No, there was no such bag.

251
Q. Were there any bags destined for Pan Am, any Pan Am flights?

252
A. No, there are no bags.

253
Q. Any passengers destined for any Pan Am flights?

254
MR. BAUMEISTER: Objection, leading.

255
THE COURT: Sustained. [???]
So, in February '89 the BKA were on the hunt for the possibility of a rogue bag entering the Frankfurt system from Air Malta. Presumably, but not certain, this would be from the Erac printout which they had obtained in late Jan '89. Of course, it still, whatever records the BKA had, or disclosed subsequent, cannot conclusively show that the bag came from Air Malta, far less it also contained a bomb.
Would this be the first indication of Malta being in someway involved in the investigation and possible bomb that brought down 103? Feb '89?

Then again, it doesn't neccessarily dispell the possibility that the BKA had pinpointed this 'printout' as a possible way of simply shifting the investigation away from there own ground. Air Malta had been the carrier, and Alert had failed to spot the bomb - no fault of Frankfurt.

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Old 26th November 2009, 04:52 PM   #255
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That's fasinating, where did you find the transcript of the Pan Am case? I was going by Coleman's account, which seems pretty accurate. He reported the bit about the x-ray machine not being allowed to be viewed by the jury, and gave the opinion that was because even a completely untrained person would have been able to spot the device on it, and the jury would have realised that.

There's a lot more evidence he says was excluded, and if even half of it is true it strongly suggests the government was extremely keen that Pan Am should be hung out to dry. For whatever reason.

Your other point, about the Frankfurt police contacting Malta in February about KM180, is extremely important. It shoots down my speculation that they may have sat on the evidence until August in the hope that any Malta records would have gone to the great shredder in the sky. It also shows interest in tracing the bomb back to Malta as early as two months after the crash. Which shoots down the speculation that this idea wasn't dreamed up until July or August.

I like this, the more speculation we shoot down, the more it might become clear what the actual possibilities are.

I'm not entirely sure at what point the finding of the label on the Babygro pointed the Scottish investigators to Malta. I think it was earlier than this, but I can't be sure. Do you happen to know?

This may be heading for the conclusion that the orphan bag seeming to have come from Malta was actually a coincidence (in the context of the clothes in the bomb bag being of Maltese origin). I'd like to be surer, though.

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Old 27th November 2009, 06:00 PM   #256
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
That's fasinating, where did you find the transcript of the Pan Am case? I was going by Coleman's account, which seems pretty accurate. He reported the bit about the x-ray machine not being allowed to be viewed by the jury, and gave the opinion that was because even a completely untrained person would have been able to spot the device on it, and the jury would have realised that.

There's a lot more evidence he says was excluded, and if even half of it is true it strongly suggests the government was extremely keen that Pan Am should be hung out to dry. For whatever reason.

Your other point, about the Frankfurt police contacting Malta in February about KM180, is extremely important. It shoots down my speculation that they may have sat on the evidence until August in the hope that any Malta records would have gone to the great shredder in the sky. It also shows interest in tracing the bomb back to Malta as early as two months after the crash. Which shoots down the speculation that this idea wasn't dreamed up until July or August.

I like this, the more speculation we shoot down, the more it might become clear what the actual possibilities are.

I'm not entirely sure at what point the finding of the label on the Babygro pointed the Scottish investigators to Malta. I think it was earlier than this, but I can't be sure. Do you happen to know?

This may be heading for the conclusion that the orphan bag seeming to have come from Malta was actually a coincidence (in the context of the clothes in the bomb bag being of Maltese origin). I'd like to be surer, though.

Rolfe.
I agree that the fact Frankfurt authorities were pursuing some sort of connection to Malta in Feb '89 would indicate and possibly vidicate the appearence of the Erac printout. However, whichever way I decide to interpret this, I am constantly drawn back to Erac's printout being the only record of note, disclosed by the BKA. Given the issues raised on this thread, the initial reports of the crash, the known PLFP group arrested, and the fact it had supplied the main feeder flight, it is very difficult to believe that the German authorities did not suppress all other records. I've painted out the scenario again and again within my head and verbally to others (some vaguely familiar with the Lockerbie case, some not) and without fail, on every occassion, it is highly probably and absolutely expected, that the BKA and a host of security and associated officials would and should have been crawling all over Frankfurt on the 22 December 1988.

Yet, media reports, all the documentary investigations, all the books written and the actual court judgement itself would simply have us believe that this one single document (in association with 2 handwritten worksheets), was all that was recovered, purely by chance, and it should point remarkably to Malta. Although, perhaps this was one of many calls made by the BKA. Were there other documents they had seized showing the possibility of an errant bag and had contacted other airlines? Would we have heard about any such calls? Highly unlikely I'd assume.

If not for the initial media reports on the night of the crash or the fact that the primary feeder flight had departed from their airport, or the fact the BKA must have been aware of Gannon and McKee's (amoongst others) presence on the 103A flight, the Frankfurt authorities would have been absolutely aware that container AVE4041, containing luggage from Frankfurt, was identified within 3 days as to been the one which had contained the bomb.

So despite, Heathrow hiding some it's cards behind it's back, and Frankfurt replicating, the 4041 container presents an immediate focus upon Frankfurt and essentially away from Heathrow.

Bedfords suitcases and the Heathrow break-in, together with the loss of records from Frankfurt, opens the possibility that both sets of authorities, airport security officials and law enforcement and intellligence agencies are preparing to, or at the very least attempting to, deflect any responsibilty, culpability and further inquiries from discovering any discrepancies or possibilty of surreptitious activities involving luggage loading, screening and reconciliation on either flight.
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Old 27th November 2009, 06:40 PM   #257
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I totally agree. I really just commented that the contacting of Malta in February shot down my favoured speculation - that the entire Malta connection was dreamed up in July. Or that perhaps the Frankfurt police sat on the transcript until August to give Malta time to discard its December paperwork.

The implication that the BKA were smothering something like mad doesn't go away. And it's still perfectly possible that the Erac printout is either a complete fabrication, with Erac's little human-interest story carefully crafted to give it provenance, or that her story is entirely on the level but the printout was tampered with after she produced it, without her knowledge.

I could imagine that if the BKA had colluded with the Frankfurt airport management in a clean sweep of all the evidence (maybe on Christmas Day), Bogomira producing that printout would be a bit of a shock. Her manager's reaction, as described, is quite interesting. I'd just have expected that, if the BKA decided to make use of this fortuitous happening to get the evidence they wanted into play, they had their act together as quickly as February.

By the way, "Baz" categorically declares that Gannon and McKee were not on PA103A. I kind of thought myself that they joined PA103 at Heathrow. Could you go into your reasons for thinking that they flew from Frankfurt?

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Old 28th November 2009, 11:37 AM   #258
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Many recent changes on the wiki now.
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Old 28th November 2009, 02:33 PM   #259
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Sigh. Where do I apply for 48-hour days?

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Old 29th November 2009, 03:27 AM   #260
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Catching up partly: the thread's got some good headway lately. Notably Buncrana, your sustained effort here is verging on Language Award nomination. (It's sort of the anti-Stundie) First specific point tho from Rolfe:

Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Bogomira gives 20th to 25th January as the date she came forward with the printout. It seems possible this might actually have been prompted by Jones's visit. At last, some talk about someone looking for some evidence. But apparently he has been sent empty away? Perhaps I have something in my locker that might help!
That's certainly an interesting thought I missed before. In my mind, a lot's riding on Jones' testimony interview. PanAm had almost a CT official policy at the time and his claim, that PA103A's loading papers were missing as of Jan 23, is heavy. To support it tho we have the fact that no one else to my knowledge ever DID produce such loading records, even the court just "inferring" all was loaded. And, perhaps, Bogomira's printout supports this even to the date, having surfaced maybe just as or just after Jones found his own company's records there pilfered. Jan 20-25 is a little late for any other known or alleged enquiry. Hmmm...

Quote:
Mr. Berg: But the baggage list doesn't exist any more!
Bogomira: Come and see what I've got.
Mr. Berg (very, very surprised!!!): makes lame suggestion about looking in the drawer to see if anything else might still be kicking about.

Am I the only one who thinks this is screaming "cover-up"!
There's at least two of us.

Quote:
I think it's suspicious of a concerted effort to remove all the documentary evidence relating to the baggage for that day (and maybe the days surrounding it, to make it more credible), with as little fuss as possible. I suspect advantage was taken of the fact that everyone would be on holiday at some point over the next two weeks to cover up the absence of a big, co-ordinated investigation, and instead simply get the evidence out of there with as few people as possible knowing about it. Christmas Day, which was a Sunday, may have been particularly useful.
Yes, and, knowing the system, the one thing you'd need above all is the centralized computer file. Very efficient if you know who to suborn. The BKA could probably openly TAKE the records leaving no copies, in circumvention of normal rules, for some super-special given reason, and compel the centralized few people in charge to keep quiet. That alone would do it.

Now if you take it, do you do anything with it, or just keep it hidden? Either way, we've got something like that probably going on, and then this weird story about a weird paper. We've got a fairly consistent story for how that happened, but it's still a suspiciously well-placed brain fart next to the combustible data and the spark of being the only survivor. Fooomp gos the credibility to me.

It's like those horror movies where a whole (village, space station, etc) was wiped out but this one survivor - perhaps a young girl - find orphaned. Some wandering Samaritans take her in only to find she's the one that killed the (village, space station, etc) and is disguised and then kills the new crew one by one. This paper is that suspicious little girl. Just how did she survive? Don't take her in, I scream twelve minutes in, and then have their failure played out in graphic detail for the next hour.

Quote:
That doesn't prove it was the police, but I think the absence of police officers running around demanding to know where the hell the data have all disappeared to, and the fact that later, the documents needed to make sense of the printout surfaced in their hands, suggests at least complicity.
I just can't accept that they weren't all over, as I'm sure you can't either. The real question is why has their real mission there remained silent and invisible and as-if-never-happened?

We are getting somewhere, right?
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Old 29th November 2009, 03:32 AM   #261
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Originally Posted by Dan O. View Post
Many recent changes on the wiki now.
I saw them. I like the Rolf bait you placed. Sorry I haven't been looking for me-bait or adding anything for a bit. This next week I'll work it up some more. I still say it should be Lockerbie specific instead of a Lockerbie section in an otherwise empty network. Feels weird, imbalanced. Can that be helped?
For those unfamiliar, it's easy to register and help a little and hopefully learn


Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Sigh. Where do I apply for 48-hour days?

Rolfe.
Well you could skim a bit off the tl;drs to offset other expenditures.

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Old 29th November 2009, 04:22 AM   #262
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Sorry, also found this interesting, from above
Originally Posted by Trail of the Octopus, ch 7
Although the 'discovery' of an unaccompanied bag from Malta was seized upon as a breakthrough in the investigation, there were in fact 13 items of unaccompanied luggage on the flight. According to the minutes of the fourth international conference of police agencies called on 14 September 1989, to consider the new Libyan link with the bombing, this cast 'doubt on the total reliability of hand-written entries of the baggage handlers on the computer print-out', which had indicated only one such item. Details of the Malta connections were discussed, 'and it was explained that the bomb need not have been brought on in Malta, but must at least have come from Frankfurt'.
The pencil marks - aside from column heading notes and column indications (bottom), looking again is as I remember - two lines actually after the items above and below the mystery item, and nothing else. These themselves are interesting, being the late arrivals loaded at a differnt gate from all 109 other listed items. But these lines do also bracket 8849, as the item to look at. If the problem was only presumed as an unaccompanied bag, why pick on one in particular out of a dozen? And who really made these marks and when and why? It could be after they'd decided this one had particular significance, but that was only after investigators had it, right? And they aren't supposed to doodle on the evidence.
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Old 29th November 2009, 07:34 AM   #263
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Originally Posted by Caustic Logic View Post
I still say it should be Lockerbie specific instead of a Lockerbie section in an otherwise empty network. Feels weird, imbalanced. Can that be helped?
Right now there are a lot of missing details to fill in on Lockerbie. But eventually it will stabilize or we will have exhausted our talents for finding new data. At that point, some of the Lockerbie researchers will want to move on to other topics until new evidence is revealed. Having the site framework and talent pool already in place will allow the site to quickly expand into the other topics.

It also helps the other way. The more researchers we gather working on other topics, the more likely it will be for one of them to stumble on some piece of missing information that fits in the Lockerbie investigation. I'm just not starting the other topics until Lockerbie is fleshed out.

Although our goal is to grow our user base as quickly as possible, we need to be selective initially on who we let in to limit vandalism until we have enough experiences users to patrol the site and keep it clean. For this reason, I request that you don't publish the site address but send it privately to those that you know have something to contribute.
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Old 1st December 2009, 04:42 AM   #264
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Originally Posted by Dan O. View Post
Right now there are a lot of missing details to fill in on Lockerbie. But eventually it will stabilize or we will have exhausted our talents for finding new data. At that point, some of the Lockerbie researchers will want to move on to other topics until new evidence is revealed. Having the site framework and talent pool already in place will allow the site to quickly expand into the other topics.

It also helps the other way. The more researchers we gather working on other topics, the more likely it will be for one of them to stumble on some piece of missing information that fits in the Lockerbie investigation. I'm just not starting the other topics until Lockerbie is fleshed out.

Although our goal is to grow our user base as quickly as possible, we need to be selective initially on who we let in to limit vandalism until we have enough experiences users to patrol the site and keep it clean. For this reason, I request that you don't publish the site address but send it privately to those that you know have something to contribute.
D'oh! If a moderator reads this, it's cool to remove that link above, if possible?

You know it might be cool to get other issues going too, when the right person comes along, who might want to contribute in a certain area they're good with. EG, new member Gawdzilla might be excited to copy and paste some of his recent findings on Pearl Harbor, and I'd promise to not work on that category at all. and if a few others with interests start working there, maybe we'd get some cross pollination, etc....

I'm not really hyped on it myself yet, with so much else going on. I think you're in the lead, and doing okay so far.

I found a new video - in German w/no subtitles. It's co-produced by Conspiracy Files Guy Smith, uses a lot of the same footage and sounds as that sneaky little video, but is significantly different. A number of Germans are interviewed and say some things I'm curious about. One in particular is Herr Manfred Klink, damals Leiter Terrorabwehr BKA, discussing Frankfurt Airport, I think. Actually 7:00-8:30 span he's in the middle of would be fascinating if there were an audio babelfish site. Interestingly, neither Frau Erac nor her printout were present in this produktion (visibly).

http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...BaX2qAOjxKXmDQ

10:03 the time zone difference is illustrated
Early on the breakup animation is awesome and terrifying
8:58 Siegfried Niedek is saying some things that must be relevant to this thread. Blast my provincialism.
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Old 1st December 2009, 06:00 AM   #265
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I'll have a look at that later if I can, though my German isn't very reliable.

I noticed another little wrinkle about the Frankfurt end. Coleman notes that the stuff the BKA finally passed on to the Scottish police in August included a report about the baggage records at Malta dated 2nd February 1989. That's even earlier than I'd thought, and suggests they were actually inteviewing the Malta personnel in late January.

Given that Bogomira came out with her printout between 20th and 25th January (Jones having visited Frankfurt airport on 23rd January if that's relevant), they must have spotted the orphan bag and its possible origin almost immediately. And leaped into action.

This is all extremely odd. No reports at all of police activity in Frankfurt airport in the week or two following the crash - despite the airport being on a state of high alert as regards the threat of Semtex disguised in suitcases at the time, and the Frankfurt connection being noted right from the get-go.

Press reports that police had visited the airport within a few days of the crash do not appear to be substantiated by anyone who was actually there.

The crucial baggage records apparently discarded despite the high alert, the recognised Frankfurt link of the doomed flight and the police supposed to have swooped. Bogomira's supervisor is remarkably laid back about all this, even asking her to check a file to see if there are any more printouts, but nobody ever describes a systematic search for such records.

Reports that the baggage records had been discarded never explain who by and how and how the hell that could possibly have happened under the circumstances. Jones reports finding the cupboard bare on 23rd January, but doesn't say what explanations he was offered.

Bogomira comes forward with her printout, probably just after Jones's visit, and the police immediately grab it and start acting like real detectives. Somehow, they already have the handwritten records they need to make sense of the printout and identify that there is a bag recorded which seems to have come from a flight from which no passenger joined PA103A. Wouldn't these records be part of what Jones complained was missing? Where and when did they get these?

Within a week or so they have it sewn up, they've got all the information about the loading of KM180 at Luqa (which was still available a month after the crash even though there would have been no particular reason to have suspected Malta in the initial stages), and presumably have noted the paradox that there was no unaccompanied bag on that flight.

That's early February.

In March the Scottish police go to Malta in response to finding the blue babygro, but as the manufacturer (in Malta) has supplied 500 different retailers all over Europe, they despair of identifying its provenance and come home empty handed. Note that the Frabnkfurt police had the information about the orphan bag and KM180 at this point, but they hadn't told the Scottish police.

In August, six months after identifying the possible connection with KM180, the Frankfurt police finally pass this information on to the Scottish police. Why the wait? Once they'd done the clever detective work, why not display it proudly for everyone to see at the earliest possible moment? What was going on in these six months?

The Scottish police apparently decide that this means the clothes were bought in Malta as well as being manufactured there, and return to investigate local retailers. This is actually a non sequitur, but never mind. The field thus narrowed, they find themselves talking to Tony Gauci on 1st September.

There are links in this chain we do not have. How many different manufacturers were there? How was Mary's House identified as the probable retailer? Who first raised the issue with Tony Gauci and when (because I don't think the 1st September statement represents first contact)?

But the main mysteries at the moment are the events immediately after the crash and what the hell happened to the originals of all these records, and why did the BKA sit on their detective work for more than six months, during which time the Scottish detectives made a fruitless visit to Malta following a different lead? (Surely the necessity of interviewing potential witnesses as early as possble would have been recognised - if that information had been shared, in theory Tony Gauci could have been interviewed about the mystery shopper within a couple of months of the purchase.)

It's looking less and less likely that Bogomira's printout is a fake, but I just don't know what's going on here.

Rolfe.
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Old 1st December 2009, 02:35 PM   #266
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Feb 2, huh? That's the same day they "first" inquired at Frankfurt Main as well. I dare say you got that mixed up. Chapter 7 seems the right spot, but it's not there. As the only bolded line, I reckon I ought ta tell ye.

Otherwise tho awesome points. But nothing new without a 2/2 Malta hop.

I just spent ten minutes looking for a transcript (Abschrift) of that show and didn't find one. Any helpful German-speaking members here care to transcribe or summarize?
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Old 2nd December 2009, 03:50 AM   #267
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You're right, I had got mixed up. I read "the airport" as Luqa, but you're right, "the airport" in that context is Frankfurt.

I'll quote the passage properly.

Quote:
On 17 August 1989, eight months after the disaster, Chief Detective Superintendent John Orr received from the BKA what was said to be a computer print-out of the baggage-loading list for Pan Am Flight 103A from Frankfurt to London on the afternoon of 21 December 1988. Attached to this were two internal reports, dated 2 February 1989, describing the inquiries that BKA officers had made about the baggage-handling system at the airport. Also provided were two worksheets, one typewritten, the other handwritten, that were said to have been prepared on 21 December by airport workers at key points on the conveyor-belt network.

I don't think this advances the story much. Bogomira came forward (let's say) on 24th January, as a result of hearing about Jones's enquiries on 23rd January when he found all relevant records missing.

Maier gives Bogomira's printout to the BKA without significant delay. The BKA then make enquiries to try to establish the significance of the entries in the printout. The reports they wrote about this are dated 2nd February.

These reports draw on information from the handwritten worksheet at station 206, and the interline writer's records. There are clearly more documents being consulted during this process, as reference is made in the court judgement to alternative explanations involving containers of baggage from Damascus and Warsaw.

So when did the BKA get these documents? You suggested they got them when they visited the airport after receiving Bogomira's printout, I suggested they got them earlier, because on 23rd January all documentation had apparently already vanished. If these documents were still available at the airport in the last week of January for the BKA to find then, A. why didn't Jones find them on the 23rd, and B. why the hell had all this stuff not been hoovered up in the first week anyway?

Is it really conceivable that the BKA didn't go near Frankfurt airport until after Bogomira came forward with that printout, in spite of all the alerts about suitcase bomb-making at Frankfurt, and the early identification of the plane as "PA103 from Frankfurt to New York"? Is it really conceivable also that nobody at the airport took any initiative to preserve the baggage records under those circumstances? They do have security people in airports, I believe!

So by 24th January everything important had just vanished in the normal course of events (except, could you just have a look in the drawer and see if anything else has been kept?), but when the police arrived for the first time a few days later, they fortuitously found a few scraps of paper still in existance that allowed them to interpret Bogomira's printout and identify a connection to KM180.

Oh, come on. That can't be the situation.

Rolfe.
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Old 2nd December 2009, 05:33 AM   #268
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
You're right, I had got mixed up. I read "the airport" as Luqa, but you're right, "the airport" in that context is Frankfurt.
<snip>
So when did the BKA get these documents? You suggested they got them when they visited the airport after receiving Bogomira's printout, I suggested they got them earlier, because on 23rd January all documentation had apparently already vanished. If these documents were still available at the airport in the last week of January for the BKA to find then, A. why didn't Jones find them on the 23rd, and B. why the hell had all this stuff not been hoovered up in the first week anyway?
I also haven't seen evidence Jones, a Pan Am security guy, was looking at anything other than Pan Am files. All he said to the Maltese Double Cross was
Quote:
I went to Frankfurt airport on 23rd of January 1989, to look for documents in relation to the preparation of Flight 103 from Frankfurt to London, and particularly the cargo and baggage loading plan, who was responsible for loading the plane and what their duties were, but these documents were missing from the daily file. Ö If the original documents had been taken by the authorities, and by that I mean the police, then it would be normal practice for a copy to be retained in the Pan Am file.
He may have had a wider mandate as well, or started looking to the FAG's records after this drawn blank on Pan Am's records for the flight in question. I don't think this counts as evidence the airport's own records were missing at the time. The central file was long gone of course, but for paper records, we can't say where these were.

Quote:
Is it really conceivable that the BKA didn't go near Frankfurt airport until after Bogomira came forward with that printout, in spite of all the alerts about suitcase bomb-making at Frankfurt, and the early identification of the plane as "PA103 from Frankfurt to New York"? Is it really conceivable also that nobody at the airport took any initiative to preserve the baggage records under those circumstances? They do have security people in airports, I believe!
I'm just quoting that for the duh-bunker-types who can't be bothered with this case. There must be a lot of people at this forum aggressively not reading these threads while pretending it's all too silly to consider. Judges said guilty coz of evidence! Conspiwacies aren't real coz of Watergate! They get exposed coz cant keep secwets! Except here this one is being exposed right here and they'll insist it's just not so.

Can some one please have the spine enough to step up and tell us this is conceivable, in any meaningful way? Why would the BKA be unable to get this data until Bogomira handed over her odd souvenir? Doesn't this all make nice neat sense in some way we're missing? People jump to debunk fake moon landings crap and 9/11 holograms so why withhold the medicine for this ridiculous conspiracy theory?
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Old 2nd December 2009, 06:15 AM   #269
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It's not making sense as a complete fabrication. The evidence you turned up from Malta shows the BKA really did do as they said and followed up the Malta lead in February 1989. This definitely knocks out the suggetion that the Maltese connection could have been dreamed up and put together in the summer of 1989.

The evidence that we're seeing supports what Bogomira has been saying all along. That she was personally interested in the crash because it literally happened on her watch, and so made that printout the following evening. However, she didn't see it as her responsiblilty to run around securing evidence, and she didn't see anyone else doing that either. However, in the latter half of January something (Jones?) prompted her to take the printout to Maier.

At that point there is no (0) evidence of any police visit to the airport baggage handling facilities. This has been so little regarded that Maier actually asks Bogomira to check the drawers in case there's anything else lurking there, which suggests no police swoop he knows about. He takes the printout to the police, probably fairly promptly. At this point the police do get off their backsides and do some detective work, and by 2nd February they have identified luggage tray 8847 as apparently having come off KM180.

They then trot off to Malta and get hold of the evidence surrounding the loading of that flight. Which just happens to be present, not discarded, and shows no realistic possibility of an unaccompanied bag being on that flight.

They then sit on this for six months, before sending what they've discovered to the Scottish police on 17th August.

They haven't been ignoring terrorism in the mean time though, because in April ....

Originally Posted by The Trail of the Octopus, ch. 2
[....] two of Khreesat's missing bombs were found in the basement of the greengrocery business run by Dalkamoni's brother-in-law in Neuss. As if this were not embarrassment enough for the BKA, one of the bombs exploded while it was being disarmed, killing a technician. The other was then deliberately destroyed 'for safety reasons', thus denying the Lockerbie investigators possibly vital forensic evidence

I don't understand why they didn't turn over Frankfurt airport in December 1988. And I don't know why they sat on the evidence they did manage to assemble for six months - six months in which Tony Gauci's memory would inevitably become less reliable. And I don't quite follow where the other Khreesat bombs some in, was this part of the PA103 investigation, or a completely different game being played?

At the kindest, the BKA were grossly negligent and then dilatory. And it was pure chance that handed them what seems to have been a vital piece of evidence. But then it seems to have been equally pure chance that the apparent link to Malta which was seized on was itself coincidental and really represented a bag unconnected to the explosion.

I still think there's some dirty work going on though.

Rolfe.
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Old 2nd December 2009, 09:52 AM   #270
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Would Jones have visited Frankfurt had he not anticipated records would be available to him? Was he told that the records had been secured, only to show up at Frankfurt and be told the BKA had siezed them and he was denied access? If, as we're told, that records were lost due to them only being retained for upto a week, would Jones as someone aware of Airport procedures, have even considered it in any way viable to seek records beyond 28th Dec? Jones visited Franfurt at the end of January and these records were not made avaiable to him, thereby suggesting the records had been secured but just not made available to him.

As a technician, who was working on the day of the 103a left frankfurt, and in fact, had delt precisely with loading records (given Mrs Erac's account, and her immediate thought on hearing the news, this would appear so) of 103a, would it not seem reasonable for any LE to request Mrs Erac assist them with any records recovered in the days subsequent - before she went on holiday? She was a technician after all, with many years of experience in airport computer programming. It was on her 'watch' that 103a was loaded and even she was aware of the implications of the crash from the very first report. We're supposed to believe neither her supervisior, anyone involved in Frankfurt security nor the BKA, had any inclination of the significance of PA103A?...
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Old 2nd December 2009, 02:15 PM   #271
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Here's the appropriate part of the documentary that gives Jones and Phipps's accounts.

Originally Posted by The Maltese Double Cross
Michael Jones, Pan Am security, London
I went to Frankfurt airport on the 23rd of January 1989 to look for the documents in relation to the preparation of Flight 103 from Frankfurt to London, in particular the cargo and baggage loading plan, who was responsible for loading the plane and what their duties were. But these documents were missing from the daily file.

Denis Phipps, former head of security, British Airways
The records at Frankfurt, they were by no means complete. One was not able to get hold of the detailed records. Particularly what concerned me was there was no record as to who unloaded that flight KM 180, when it arrived at Frankfurt. We don't know who the loaders were. There was no record of the number of the bags that were actually unloaded from that flight. There were no records that I could find.

Michael Jones, Pan Am security, London
If the original documents had been taken by the authorities, and by that I mean the police, then it would be normal practice for a copy to be retained in the Pan Am file.

Narrator
In 1993, Air Malta wins its libel suit against Granada television. Granada, in a docudrama, had claimed the bomb had been placed in an unaccompanied bag on an Air Malta flight.

Denis Phipps, former head of security, British Airways
At Malta, the records of the handling of that flight KM 180 were made available for me to see. There was no evidence of any unaccompanied bags. All of the bags that were carried as passenger baggage on that flight had been checked in by a passenger who actually travelled on the flight.

Narrator
When in October 1989, the FBI visited Frankfurt airport, the agent sent back this telex to Washington: No evidence of any bag transferred from an Air Malta flight. The only evidence showing a transferred bag, a computer printout used to prepare this German police report. An airport employee, Mrs. Erac, claims to have stored in her locker a copy printed off the destroyed original computer tape.

Denis Phipps, former head of security, British Airways
The computer printout does not say where the bag came from. They tried to tie that bag to KM 180 from the worksheet which was maintained. And as we found, the worksheet is completely unreliable and in any case, even if you accept that the worksheet was approximately right, we have nobody that can account for, or was in charge of, or can tell us who or how those bags came from the actual aircraft, KM 180 to that coding station. And for more than one kilometre while they were in there waiting, those bags were under nobody's control or supervision. They were not counted. We don't know how many should be there. And it would have been possible to put another bag in there along any of that route or at any time.

Michael Jones, Pan Am security, London
I have never seen any documentation whatsoever produced by Pan Am or anybody else that show there was any interline baggage from an Air Malta flight on the 21st of December, 1988.

This is tantalisingly incomplete. The first thing I'd like to know is, when you couldn't trace the documents you were looking for, who did you ask about this? And what was their explanation for that state of affairs? Note that Jones doesn't believe the situation was consistent with the police having seized the records, though.

This view seems to be supported by Phipps's experience at Malta. When he visited Luqa, which must have been after the BKA were there in February, the loading records were still available for him to see.

Notice that they're not really talking about the missing computer files at all. Jones is talking about the tarmac loading plans for PA103A, which never surfaced. These would not have been part of the computer files,they would have been paper records as far as I know. Phipps is talking about the comparable records for the unloading of KM180. Again, they never turned up.

And yet the worksheets from the coding stations turned up, and the interline writers records. Exactly what was necessary to support the suggestion that 8849 came off KM180, but the records that might have shown that it wasn't unloaded from that plane, or that it didn't get loaded on PA103A (or if it was, identify it as something innocent), never surfaced.

What is actually going on here?

Rolfe.
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Old 2nd December 2009, 03:07 PM   #272
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Originally Posted by Buncrana View Post
Would Jones have visited Frankfurt had he not anticipated records would be available to him? Was he told that the records had been secured, only to show up at Frankfurt and be told the BKA had siezed them and he was denied access? If, as we're told, that records were lost due to them only being retained for upto a week, would Jones as someone aware of Airport procedures, have even considered it in any way viable to seek records beyond 28th Dec? Jones visited Franfurt at the end of January and these records were not made avaiable to him, thereby suggesting the records had been secured but just not made available to him.

I hope that bit of The Maltese Double Cross I posted is helpful. The records that were "only retained for a week" were the files on Bogomira's rinky-dinky little computer system. This was because the storage meda were over-written by a new batch of files. (Even so, we have evidence from the designer of the system that there should have been backups retained - that's somewhere in Robert Black's unsearchable blog, I could do with a specific link to it.)

The rest of the bumph was supposed to be filed. Like it was in Luqa. Jones expected the Frankfurt files to be there, even if the police had been to call, because he knew that SOP was to keep copies of anything the police removed. (And this makes sense - any airline would want to know what it was the police had taken, in order to look after its own interests, just as Air Malta did.)

I'd just love to know who he asked about these missing files, and what the explanation was. I'd also like to know about what else was missing - was it just the paperwork from these specific flights that was gone, or what?

Originally Posted by Buncrana View Post
As a technician, who was working on the day of the 103a left frankfurt, and in fact, had delt precisely with loading records (given Mrs Erac's account, and her immediate thought on hearing the news, this would appear so) of 103a, would it not seem reasonable for any LE to request Mrs Erac assist them with any records recovered in the days subsequent - before she went on holiday? She was a technician after all, with many years of experience in airport computer programming. It was on her 'watch' that 103a was loaded and even she was aware of the implications of the crash from the very first report. We're supposed to believe neither her supervisior, anyone involved in Frankfurt security nor the BKA, had any inclination of the significance of PA103A?...

We don't know how big a team dealt with that baggage. Maybe Bogomira was only one little cog in the wheel. Nevertheless, there's no record of anyone being asked. Within her account there's no mention even of awareness of any investigation going on.

Now I don't know exactly when Bogomira went on holiday, but I don't think it was 23rd December (Friday). She speaks of a "New Year" holiday, and she didn't get back until 14th or 15th January. My guess is she was there until 30th December or thereabouts. On 28th December a press report is already saying that the BKA visited Frankfurt airport "last week". Really? And Bogomira didn't notice? And when they found the records were already missing, there was no general call to see if anything at all might have been retained?

That press report makes it quite clear that the involvement of Frankfurt airport was generally recognised only a week after the crash. And sooner than that, the very first radio news reports actually gave the impression that the plane was a direct Frankfurt to New York flight. There's absolutely no reason for the police not to have swooped on Frankfurt airport within hours.

This is the same police force that knew about Jibril and Dalkamoni and Khreesat, and the Toshiba barometer bombs, and had put Frankfurt airport on alert for exactly such a device coming through. Less then eight weeks previously.

Now we have an exploding airliner, out of Frankfurt (even at one remove), and even if the warning bells aren't ringing first go out of the box, it's identified as being a bomb very quickly, and being in a suitcase that was in a container that largely contained baggage from Frankfurt by early January.

Are we seriously expected to believe they didn't go anywhere near the airport until after Maier passed on Bogomira's printout in late January? And yet, if they did go, why didn't they secure these missing records, or if the records were already missing, why didn't they turn the place over?

It still looks to me very much like a clean sweep of everything relevant, including backups, and leaving no copies, followed by selective release or discovery of only the parts that will support the "8840 came from KM180 and was loaded on to PA103A" theory, while continuing to suppress any items that might contradict this.

And I don't see how that could have been done without the police at least being involved.

Rolfe.
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Old 2nd December 2009, 03:31 PM   #273
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Originally Posted by Caustic Logic View Post
http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...BaX2qAOjxKXmDQ

10:03 the time zone difference is illustrated
Early on the breakup animation is awesome and terrifying
8:58 Siegfried Niedek is saying some things that must be relevant to this thread. Blast my provincialism.

Damn, I'm getting bits of it but it's more tantalising than informative. Even a written transcript of the German text would be easier.

Rolfe.
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Old 2nd December 2009, 04:28 PM   #274
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http://lockerbiecase.blogspot.com/20...mes-malta.html
Unnamed FA system desginer guy

Glad you covered the week-held records. The central file is all this refers to, the digital one held in-system. No mention anywhere of how long tape or disc backups were held. No mention of them at al in fact.

Paperwork was kept for records at other spots (coding stations) - and we'd presume at the planes - loading and unloading. Both Phipps and Jones found papers at this point missing later on, so apparently taken. I'm not sure how long there would normally be kept on file. Jones seemed to expect a copy still there when he looked and he'd know the procedures.

And Rolfe, I'm confused that you've mentioned Malta and February together twice again. Was there some other evidence for that? I do suppose it's possible they'd go there anytime after 2/2 and putting papers together, to check into the origin end of that one unaccompanied bag among a dozen.

On that video, I don't know if they're saying anything amazing, probably not, but it would be an addition either way. I'm going to start pestering some Germans or sumthin.
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Old 2nd December 2009, 04:40 PM   #275
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Originally Posted by Caustic Logic View Post

Thanks for that. I feel a wiki article coming on.

Originally Posted by Caustic Logic View Post
And Rolfe, I'm confused that you've mentioned Malta and February together twice again. Was there some other evidence for that? I do suppose it's possible they'd go there anytime after 2/2 and putting papers together, to check into the origin end of that one unaccompanied bag among a dozen.

Buncrana's find, a couple of pages back in the thread. Transcript from the original court case against Pan Am in the early 1990s. I don't know where he found it.

Quote:
229
Refutation of plaintiffs' supposition was permitted from Wilfred Borg, the general manager of ground operations for Air Malta, one of the few witnesses produced by defendant whose testimony was admitted:

230
Q Let me show you what we have marked as Exhibits HF-1 through HF-15 in evidence. (Handing.)

231
A Thank you.

232
Q Looking at those exhibits, Mr. Borg, have you ever seen them before?

233
A Yes, I did.

234
Q Would you tell the ladies and gentlemen what those documents are, the whole package?

235
A That is the flight file or the ship's papers for Flight KM-180, destined to Frankfurt in Germany on the 21st of December 1988.

236
Q When did you first see this particular flight file?

237
A I saw this flight file, the first time, in February '89.

238
Q What were the circumstances under which you saw the flight file at that time?

239
A Our office in Germany had received a request from the German police requesting us whether we had any passengers or baggage connecting to Pan American flights out of Frankfurt.

240
They said they were investigating this, they wanted this information in view of the Lockerbie incident in December, '88.

241
Q And what did you do with respect to their request?

242
A The request was passed along to me by our office in Germany.

243
I requested the manager responsible to keep these records, to give me this relevant flight file. I went through it and gave the relevant replies to the German police.

244
Q What were those replies?

245
A We had no passengers connecting on the flights out of Frankfurt.

246
We had no baggage destined to go in flights out of Frankfurt.

247
And, we had no unaccompanied luggage on that flight.

248
Tr. 5991-92.

249
Q. Now, sir, based upon everything that you've read and all the investigation that you did, are you able to tell this jury whether or not there was an unaccompanied bag on Flight 180?

250
A. No, there was no such bag.

251
Q. Were there any bags destined for Pan Am, any Pan Am flights?

252
A. No, there are no bags.

Reading that in detail, it looks as if they just asked for the evidence to be sent, rather than visiting in person. At the moment, it's all the same to me. The point is that the BKA in Frankfurt were looking for the records from KM180 in February. Independently verified. So they didn't dream the idea up in July,

Originally Posted by Caustic Logic View Post
On that video, I don't know if they're saying anything amazing, probably not, but it would be an addition either way. I'm going to start pestering some Germans or sumthin.

Let me know if you have any success.

Rolfe.
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Old 2nd December 2009, 04:54 PM   #276
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Here's the relevant part from the Black blog, which is from the newspaper The Times of Malta. The date is 10th May 2009.

Quote:
The expert who helped design the baggage system in place at Frankfurt airport in 1988 and familiar with the operating software has now said: "The Lockerbie judges got it wrong, they simply got it wrong."

In the original trial, the Crown could offer no evidence of how the bag got aboard the Air Malta flight in the first place. Malta had presented records showing that no unaccompanied baggage was on the Air Malta flight in question.

The baggage reconciliation system at Malta's airport did not only rely on computer lists. Personnel also counted all pieces of baggage, manually checking them off against passenger records. Maltese baggage loaders had been prepared to testify, yet they were never called as witnesses.

In spite of a lack of evidence that the baggage containing the bomb actually left Malta, the judges concluded that it must have been the case, based on an interpretation of the computer print out from Frankfurt.

The hotly disputed computer printout was saved by Bogomira Erac, a technician at Frankfurt airport. She testified at the original trial under the pseudonym Madame X. One of the reasons this computer printout was so controversial was that although Ms Erac thought it important to save, she then tossed it in her locker and went on holiday.

Only on her return did she hand it to her supervisor who gave it to the Bundeskiminalmt (BKA), the German Federal Police. The BKA did not disclose this printout to Scottish and American investigators for several months.

The German expert has now examined all of the evidence that related to the Frankfurt baggage system placed before the court in the original trial. The expert, who agreed to review this evidence on condition of anonymity, spent six months examining the data.

Although he demanded anonymity, he agreed that if a formal approach was made by Mr Al-Megrahi's lawyers or the Scottish Criminal Cases review commission, he would meet them.

He was puzzled when he saw how short the printout out was and explained that there was no need to print a very small extract from the baggage system traffic, as a full back-up tape was made. This would have shown all the baggage movements at Frankfurt airport that day.

When it was explained that the court heard that the system was purged every few days and that no back-up tape existed, he said: "This is not true."

"Of course it is possible no back-up tape was made for that particular day but that day would have been the first and only day in the history of Frankfurt Airport when not one piece of baggage or cargo was lost, rerouted or misplaced," he added.

He went on to say that FAG, the company that operated Frankfurt Airport, needed these tapes to defend against insurance claims for lost or damaged cargo.

The expert maintains that even with his expert knowledge of the system he could not draw the conclusion reached by the Lockerbie trial judges in 2001.

"They would have needed much more information of the baggage movements, not this very narrow time frame," he said.

Questions are now raised about why Mr Al-Megrahi's legal team at the trial in the Netherlands decided to accept and rely upon a report on the baggage system compiled by a BKA officer and not find an expert on the system. The Scottish police also did not seek to interview those people who designed and installed the system.

The plot gets even thicker.

Rolfe.
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Old 2nd December 2009, 05:03 PM   #277
Caustic Logic
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Oh yeah, Borg, I remember that now. Sometime in February, sure, after the 2nd the BKA would be able to (roughly) know which bags were unaccompanied after checking coding stations and times to see which flights these items probably came from and compare it to passenger transfers. So they'd ask Air Malta, presumably some other air lines. Nothing about visits, just info called in via Germany to Malta and passed back by phone it seems. Okay.

The date would also seem to confirm the BKA did have the printout like they say at that time, and also shows they weren't just sitting in it at first - they first found out it pointed to a dead end. Then somewhere in the next months, what happened is that became okay somehow.
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Old 2nd December 2009, 05:46 PM   #278
Buncrana
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Here's the link to details of the original PanAm case detailing admissions which were denied to PanAm by the court - http://openjurist.org/37/f3d/804

Unless someone can provide a plausible argument supporting the theory that not one solitary German policeman or anyone from any number of security agencies involved at an airport, thought about any of the records relating to 103a, and according to what was revealed in Court and articles contained here, is it reasonable to assume that is most likely not fact?

We have an unnamed expert stating records should have still been available, even after the week as claimed. We have Khreesat. We have AVE4041. We have initial reports that the crash over Lockerbie was a flight from Frankfurt. We even have the media reporting that the investigators are at Frankfurt, and obviously Heathrow, within days.

On Tuesday the 27th December, The Arizona Republic carried a report stating
Quote:
The New York-bound flight originated as a Boeing 727 from Frankfurt, West Germany, with a change of planes at London's Heathrow airport. Federal police in West Germany and the commander of Scotland Yard's anti-terrorist squad last week began investigations at those airports.
Link - http://plane-truth.com/Aoude/geocities/az3.html
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Old 2nd December 2009, 06:02 PM   #279
Rolfe
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I'm trying to think, if I was a BKA minion, and I had to follow up the printout that maier handed over, what would I do?

I'd need the other documents first, because it makes no sense as it stands. Do we have any information about where that came from? Any evidence of a BKA visit to Frankfurt airport in the last week of January? Or did they already have the documents from an earlier visit? I suppose the first thing I'd want would be the coders' worksheets showing which station was coding luggage from which flight at which time.

If I had these, and knew the key to the printout (for example that S0009 was station 206), I could get at least an approximation of which flight each of these 111 items came from.

I would also have a passenger list for PA103A (which I don't believe was missing), and a record of where each passenger came from. A good number of these bags would have come from the checkin desks at Frankfurt itself, and more would belong to passengers who weren't transferring to PA103 at Heathrow. These would have to be identified and ticked off, even though the main focus would naturally be luggage being interlined to PA103A and on to PA103.

Here's Coleman's version of this, which is the most detailed I can find.

Quote:
The BKA estimate that 'about' 135 bags were sent through to the baggage room below the departure gate of Flight 103A, some belonging to the 79 passengers whose journey ended in London and the rest to the 49 who were going on to New York. There were no records of luggage sent directly to the departure gate, nor of interline luggage taken directly from one aircraft to another, nor of bags belonging to first-class passengers.

Of the 49 passengers bound for New York and beyond, 28 began their journey in Frankfurt, and 21 transferred from other connecting flights.

Of the 135 bags mentioned by the BKA, 111 had been logged on the Frankfurt computer and about 24 taken directly to the aircraft from three other connecting Pan Am flights. The list compiled by Pan Am at its check-in desks, however, showed not 111 but 117 items of luggage, and the discrepancy has not been convincingly cleared up to this day.

129 passengers
79 stopping at Heathrow, presumably unimportant because their luggage wouldn't be transferred to Maid of the Seas.
49 going on to New York

Of these 49, 28 came through the Frankfurt checkin desks.
The remaining 21 came from other connecting flights at Frankfurt.

So how would I, PC Plod, approach this? I suppose I'd start by excluding the checkin desk bags, because I couldn't prove anything untoward about any of these. (Though how I could exclude them as being the bomb bag, if I can't trust the x-ray screen, is another matter.)

I'm then left with all the connecting-flight bags, whether headed for New York or not. So, the bags of the 21 passengers coming from connecting flights and going all the way are presumably indistinguishable from the bags of the connecting-flight passengers who are getting off at Heathrow, at this stage. (Unless the BP and TO designations signify something, but I don't know about that.) That second group might be about 40 bags, possibly.

That gives me maybe 60 entries to check (or more, some passengers had more than one bag). My first move is going to be to look at the coding stations and times to see which flights these came from. I should end up with a list of flights that seem to have supplied baggage to PA103A.

I then need to look at the passenger lists to see which flights I know passengers transferred from. Presumably all this tallies, except for KM180. I then shout "I have you now, Mr. Bond!" and go tell the boss.

There's so much wrong with this I don't know where to start. First, all these bags were x-rayed, so what are we assuming? That the x-ray examination was pointless? In that case any of the bags could have had the bomb in it. Including the ones checked in at Frankfurt, or any of the ones that came off a connecting flight apparently attached to a passenger.

And again, I don't know that item 8849 was tagged for New York - do I? I'm just assuming that was the case.

Have I definitely attached all the other bags to passsengers, or at least to flights with people on them who were headed to PA103A? Or are there any other items there that aren't convincingly attached to a flight with a passenger? We don't know.

What about the 24 other bags, or possibly more, including bags from three other PA flights, first class bags, and bags with short connection times? Have I any idea whether any of these might appear to be unaccompanied? I have not. And let's face it, that stuff is more likely to have excaped the x-ray.

Two things strike me here.

Quote:
The expert maintains that even with his expert knowledge of the system he could not draw the conclusion reached by the Lockerbie trial judges in 2001. "They would have needed much more information of the baggage movements, not this very narrow time frame," he said.

Quote:
Questions are now raised about why Mr Al-Megrahi's legal team at the trial in the Netherlands decided to accept and rely upon a report on the baggage system compiled by a BKA officer and not find an expert on the system. The Scottish police also did not seek to interview those people who designed and installed the system.

It seems to me there's far too little information here to conclude a damn thing. It's just the coincidence that this orphan item seems to have come from Malta, and the babygro had "Made in Malta" on its label that seems to have impressed people. Too much, I think.

Rolfe.
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Last edited by Rolfe; 2nd December 2009 at 06:06 PM.
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Old 2nd December 2009, 06:07 PM   #280
Rolfe
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By the way, I note that in several recent posts I've called Bogomira's supervisor Maier instead of Berg. Maier was the x-ray operator.

Apologies if I've confused anyone.

Rolfe.
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