Noordin Mohammad Top, Indonesia's Most Wanted Islamic Militant, Is Killed in a Police Raid
Noordin Mohammad Top, aka Noordin Muh Top, Noordin Mat Top, and Noordin Din Moch Top (11 August 1968 – 17 September 2009) was Indonesia's most wanted Islamic militant.
Born in Kluang, Johor, Malaysia, he is thought to have been a key bomb maker and/or financier for Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) and to have left JI and set up a more violent splinter group known as Al-Qaeda in the Malay Archipelago. Top was reported by the United States Department of Justice's FBI to be "an explosives expert." The FBI also has reported him to be "an officer, recruiter, bombmaker, and trainer for the Jemaah Islamiah (JI) group."
Noordin and Azahari Husin were thought to have masterminded the 2003 JW Marriott hotel bombing in Jakarta, the 2004 Australian embassy bombing in Jakarta, the 2005 Bali bombings and the 2009 JW Marriott - Ritz-Carlton bombings, and that he may have assisted in the 2002 Bali Bombings.
Indonesian National Police Chief Bambang Hendarso Danuri announced on 17 September 2009 that Noordin Mohammed Top was killed in a police raid along with three other terrorists. Among four bodies recovered after the raid on a village house in Central Java, a decapitated corpse was identified as Noordin's—fingerprints taken from it matched those of Noordin that were obtained from Malaysia. A similarity was found in at least 14 minutiae points. According to a police intelligence officer, the renter of the house, "Susilo", Noordin's close associate Bagus Budi Pranoto, alias "Urwah", and suspected bomb-maker "Maruto", were killed in the raid, along with Noordin.
Sidney Jones, the Southeast Asia programme director of the International Crisis Group, commented that Top's death was "a huge blow for the extremist organizations in Indonesia and the region" because "there isn't another radical leader in Indonesia who has given that same message so consistently."