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Australia: MH370 captain’s simulator had Indian Ocean route

Australian officials confirmed on Thursday that data recovered from a home flight simulator owned by the captain of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 showed that someone had used the device to plot a course to the southern Indian Ocean, where the missing jet is believed to have crashed.

Australia MH370-AV
There has been confusion over exactly what was found on Capt. Zaharie Ahmad Shah’s flight simulator since New York Magazine reported last week that an FBI analysis of the device showed Zaharie had conducted a simulated flight to the southern Indian Ocean less than a month before the plane vanished along a similar route. The magazine cited the discovery as strong evidence that the disappearance was a premeditated act of mass murder-suicide at the hands of the captain.

Malaysia immediately rejected the report as false. Malaysia’s national police chief, Khalid Abu Bakar said Malaysian police had never handed any document or information to any authority abroad including the FBI — a perplexing statement, given that Malaysia’s own transport minister confirmed two years ago that Malaysia was working with the FBI to analyze data from the simulator’s hard drives.

Adding to the confusion, Australia’s Joint Agency Coordination Center — which is overseeing the search for the plane off Australia’s west coast — subsequently issued a vague statement that seemed to imply such a route had been found on Zaharie’s machine. The agency then cautioned that evidence of the route did not prove that Zaharie had planned to steer the plane off course and showed only “the possibility of planning” for such an event.

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