FBI: A “B” in the Bonnet?

“The truth is the FBI has vast experience in this area [forensic investigations of terror incidents] and tremendous expertise.” Former FBI Agent Ron Hosko — 10/11/2015 (1)

I certainly do not doubt the experience and the knowledge of the FBI forensic investigators. (I have the pleasure to know one of them and he is a remarkable scientist.)

Still, I have a simple question: How could the FBI possibly confuse “SIB” for “21B” ?

In a recent post (The THURING Board Watermark: FBI Analysis ), I told you that:

The FBI report on the Togo timer does not mention the watermark on the main board of the timer. This is not surprising as the report signed by Thurman is almost a copy of the CIA report. (Here is  this undated FBI report. I think that it must have been written between 26 September and 11 December 1990.)

However, a FBI document dated 20 August 1990 mentions the following:

“Special photography techniques were utilized on specimen K-1 to identify the number/letter “21B” which is contained within the figure of an oval. The number/letter appears in the upper left quadrant of the circuit board, within the lamination and not on the surface of the board. This identification was added during the manufacturing process, and may offer a code to identify the source of this board. It should be noted, however, that the company which applied the actual  printed circuit, may not be the company which manufactured the green circuit board.”

One may perhaps honestly confuse “MEBO” for “M580” or “MEBQ”. But why would anyone misread “SIB” for “21B” when the “B” is asymmetrical is puzzling to say the least…

DP/124-03 (Flipped vertically)

DP/124-03 (Flipped vertically)


DP/124 – 03

To my knowledge, when the upper case “B” is asymmetrical, the biggest part is always the bottom part. And it is certainly the way the “B” in the official “FBI” logo is (was)  designed… NO EXCUSE!


FBI Tag of the Togo Timer (K1)

According to a well-informed source, THURING AG always ordered the Copper Clad Laminates from a Swiss branch of ISOLA: Schweizerische Isolawerke AG in Breitenbach. (SIB)

I think that it would have been a good and obvious place to start if the CIA (and later the FBI ) really wanted to trace the origin of the TOGO timer! (NB: DP/124 is the TOGO timer aka K-1)

Almost 30 years later, it may be too late to use this information. Then again, maybe not…


(1) Ex-Agent Hosko: FBI ‘Unmatched Around the World’ in Terror Forensic Probes

NOV 10 2015



This entry was posted in FBI, ISOLA, MST13. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to FBI: A “B” in the Bonnet?

  1. Scott says:

    Interesting Hosko also states “Just look no further than Pan Am 103 where they tracked it back to barometric triggers”

    Not an MST-13 timer then?


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