MI5 reportedly monitoring online gambling websites for terrorist activity

The founder of WorldNet Daily, Joseph Farah, claims in his subscription G2 newsletter that staffers for Britain's MI5 intelligence agency have been assembling a team of spies trained to track terrorists thought to be trying to use Internet gambling websites to launder money.

Without quoting his sources, Farah reports that the spies all have undergone crash courses in how to spot "...suspicious bets on the mushrooming number of gambling sites on the Internet."

Farah writes: "There are now over 3 000 sites where bets can be placed on anything. Millions of British pounds pass through the sites every day. Often the money is diverted to recruit and train potential terrorists in Britain.

"Some of the largest bets have been traced to British gamblers using sites operating as far afield as the Netherlands, Los Angeles, Tokyo and Hong Kong. The follow-the-money trail has led the MI5 officers to banks in the Middle East and Pakistan," G2 alleges without giving details.

In an apparent reference to media reports earlier this week, the newsletter claims that intelligence officers "...suspect that some of the gamblers may have access to the high-protection Islamic encryption software known as Mujahideen Secrets-2. Its arrival on the Internet was only discovered late last year.

"It has been designed by some of al-Qaida's best computer experts and allows money launderers to place their bets at far less risk of interception by MI5 or other intelligence services," Farah quotes an unidentified Security Service source.

Counter-terrorism specialist Terry Pattar told a closed security conference in London recently that the software referred to by Farah has been created to form the nucleus of al-Qaida's first "jihad university on-line." His comments received wide media publicity.

"The software provides a variety of programs that offer a whole course of how to carry out attacks without having to train abroad. The funding for this comes from money laundered through the gambling websites," Pattar apparently claimed.

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