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Sudden death of American engineer in Singapore raises questions

 
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 20566260
United States
02/16/2013 02:10 PM
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Sudden death of American engineer in Singapore raises questions
Shane Todd's girlfriend found him hanging in his Singaporean apartment six months ago, a sudden tragedy that local police deemed a suicide. But six months later, Todd's girlfriend, family and the FBI are still wondering what exactly happened. Todd had just put in his last day as an employee of IME, a Singaporean government research institute, where he had been working on a high-powered amplifier with commercial and "huge" military uses. The amplifier was being co-developed with the Chinese telecom giant Huawei. Todd's parents say their son was increasingly uncomfortable at his job and "said there were things he had done that could get him in trouble with the US government."


[link to www.theverge.com]

his linked in profile [link to sg.linkedin.com]

[link to sg.news.yahoo.com]

Engineer’s family questions son’s sudden death in Singapore

Todd resigned from IME sometime later. Days before his death, he was offered a job by a US research firm working with the US defence department and NASA. On his final working day, Todd was last seen at a farewell lunch with his IME colleagues who described him as looking upbeat.

After acquiring Todd's external hard drive by chance and obtaining a second opinion on his autopsy report, the family now suspect foul play.

They question suicide notes that praised IME (which he purportedly disliked), bruises on his body and proof that his hard drive had been accessed after his death.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 20566260
United States
02/16/2013 02:14 PM
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Re: Sudden death of American engineer in Singapore raises questions
more on this story that is starting to unravel....

[link to www.ft.com]



Mary and Rick Todd were anxious about entering the apartment where their oldest son had lived and died. Late last June the couple had flown from Montana to Denver to Los Angeles to a colonial-era house in the Chinatown district of Singapore to try to make sense of an unthinkable loss: Shane Todd, a young engineer who had just wrapped up an 18-month stint with a government research institute known as IME, was dead – an apparent suicide, according to the Singapore police. Mrs Todd felt her heart pounding as she climbed the narrow staircase to his apartment and thought about what the police had told her a day earlier.

Shane had died a week before he was to return to the US. The police said he had drilled holes into his bathroom wall, bolted in a pulley, then slipped a black strap through the pulley and wrapped it around the toilet several times. He then tethered the strap to his neck and jumped from a chair. Shane, 6ft 1in and nearly 200lb, hanged himself from the bathroom door, the autopsy report said.

So the Todds, along with two of Shane’s younger brothers, John and Dylan, were unnerved by what they didn’t see as they crossed the threshold. The front door was unlocked and there was no sign of an investigation – no crime-scene tape, no smudges from fingerprint searches. “The first thing I did was make a beeline for the bathroom,” Mrs Todd recalled. She wanted to see exactly how Shane had died – and she saw nothing that fitted the police description. The marble bathroom walls had no holes in them. Nor were there any bolts or screws. The toilet was not where the police had said.

Beyond the bathroom, Shane’s home looked like a snapshot of a man in the middle of a move. There was laundry in the dryer and dirty washing on the floor. Clean clothes were folded on the couch. Boxes were packed. Shane, in his last hours, had been trying to sell his furniture. He had written out price tags. The Todds found Shane’s airline ticket on the dining table. His laptops and mobile phone were gone – taken and kept by the Singapore police.
Anonymous Coward (OP)
User ID: 20566260
United States
02/16/2013 02:16 PM
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Re: Sudden death of American engineer in Singapore raises questions
[link to www.ft.com]


That last-minute find has altered the story of Shane Todd’s death. The card-sized plastic case was not a speaker but an external hard drive with a back-up of his computer files, including his work at IME, and a timetable and plan for a project that apparently involved IME and Huawei Technologies, the Chinese telecom giant.

The plan lays out how, from 2012 to the end of 2014, IME and Huawei would “co-develop” an amplifier device powered by gallium nitride (GaN), a semiconductor material able to withstand extreme heat and power levels well beyond silicon. GaN devices have commercial use in lighting as well as high-powered transistors for mobile phone base stations. They also have tremendous military potential, and major US defence contractors – including Northrup-Grumman and Raytheon – have pursued significant research and development in GaN for use in radar and satellite communications.

Security and technology experts consulted by the FT reviewed the project plan and all noted its civilian and potential military applications. Robert York, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of California, Santa Barbara – a world leader in GaN research and where Shane earned a doctorate in silicon devices – said it would be “unnerving but not surprising” if Huawei were to be trying to advance its GaN technology. The high-powered amplifier has civilian use but “could be used for a number of military applications: high-powered radar, electronic warfare including signal jamming and even potentially some weapons”, Professor York added.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 34539965
Costa Rica
02/16/2013 02:47 PM
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Re: Sudden death of American engineer in Singapore raises questions
If you're an engineer, stay far outside the reach of Raytheon. Recall Eugene Losik?
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 29729580
United States
02/16/2013 03:01 PM
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Re: Sudden death of American engineer in Singapore raises questions
There are a lot of dead Marconi scientists.

'nuff said.
Anonymous Coward
User ID: 1634951
Singapore
05/22/2013 05:23 AM
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Re: Sudden death of American engineer in Singapore raises questions
Looks like 2 US experts confirm it was suicide

[link to news.xin.msn.com]
jamspolo

User ID: 40281889
China
05/22/2013 05:24 AM
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Re: Sudden death of American engineer in Singapore raises questions
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jamspolo

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