Video: London suspects caught on tape

By Keith Miller Senior foreign correspondent
NBC News
updated 7/12/2005 7:45:10 PM ET 2005-07-12T23:45:10

The break in the London bombing investigation appears to have been the result of old-fashioned police work and a bit of luck. London's extensive network of surveillance cameras paid off.

During a painstaking review of thousands of hours of closed-circuit video, police uncovered a gem. All four bombers were caught on tape at King's Cross Station at 8:30 a.m., just 20 minutes before the explosions on three trains transiting through the busy subway hub.

“It's like a lot of detective work, I suppose,” says terrorist expert Simon Reeve. “It's really crunching the numbers, leg work.”

And, in a lucky break, the family of the suspect aboard the No. 30 bus called the Central Casualty Bureau at 10 p.m. last Thursday night to report him missing. They told police he traveled to London with three other men.

The jigsaw puzzle came together with surprising speed.

“We have found documents bearing the names of three of those four men close to the seats of three of the explosions,” says Peter Clarke of the Scotland Yard Anti-Terrorist Branch.

Police also believe they have found the remains of one of the men from leads in the debris from the blast at Aldgate Station.

Thousands of tips flooded the anti-terrorist hot line. Hundreds of eyewitnesses offered evidence.

Richard Jones was on the No. 30 bus. He noticed “A very handsome young lad. And he kept dipping into the bag and fiddling with something.”

Police called the public's participation in the investigation invaluable.

Spanish investigators are also helping in the manhunt. And they know all about luck. An unexploded bomb, a cell phone and a tip from the public about a suspicious van led them to the terrorist behind the Madrid train bombings.

At King's Cross Station, the investigation continues throughout the night, along with the effort to recover all the dead from a tunnel deep below the street.

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