Published: Tue, December 04, 2018
Sports | By Johanna Francis

Media frenzy over 'terror plot arrest' of cricketer Usman Khawaja's brother

Media frenzy over 'terror plot arrest' of cricketer Usman Khawaja's brother

The brother of Australian cricket star Usman Khawaja has been granted bail amid accusations he framed a colleague with a fake terror hit list targeting senior politicians.

Arsalan Khawaja was arrested in Sydney on Tuesday morning following an ongoing counter-terrorism investigation into the document, which was found at the University of NSW in August.

"The arrest relates to documents allegedly found on University of NSW grounds in August this year containing plans that purported to facilitate terrorism attacks".

The Sri Lankan-born PhD student spent a month in solitary confinement at a remote super-secure prison, where he was questioned about targets, not just including Australia's then leader, but reportedly the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the city's iconic Opera House.

It did not appear from the charges that the list was linked to any credible assassination plots.

Khawaja's arrest comes less than two months after investigators raided the Sydney home where he lives with his parents.

On Tuesday, police alleged Mr Nizamdeen had been "set up in a planned and calculated manner" by Mr Khawaja.

Police made the arrest of Khawaja in relation to the alleged attempt to pervert justice and forgery of documents.

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It allegedly outlined threats to kill former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull, former foreign minister Julie Bishop and attacks on a number of iconic sites.

However he was released in October after police failed to connect his handwriting to the writing in the notebook.

Willing added that police believe Khawaja orchestrated the set up and may have been motivated by a dispute over a woman.

As Australia prepare for Thursday's opening Test against India in Adelaide, Usman Khawaja fronted the media to address the situation.

Mr Willing on Tuesday said Mr Nizamdeen's arrest was regrettable and police have paid his court costs, but stopped short of apologising.

"This is a matter for the police to deal with", he told reporters.

"Out of respect for the process, it would be inappropriate for me to make further comment".

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