A top Islamist terror suspect accused of plotting to crash a plane into a Singapore airport has been captured in Malaysia after a year on the run.

Mas Selamat Kastari, believed to be the head of the Singapore cell of Jemaah Islamiyah, the militant group linked to Al Qaeda that was behind the 2002 Bali bombings, was re-arrested after escaping from a detention center 16 months ago.

Mas Selamat, 48, had been on the run since squeezing through a toilet window and climbing over a fence, sparking a massive manhunt stretching from Singapore to Indonesia and Malaysia.

"Mas Selamat has been arrested by the Malaysian Special Branch in a joint operation between the MSB and the Internal Security Department," the Ministry of Home Affairs in Singapore said in a statement.

Mas Selamat, who is accused of plotting to hijack a plane and crash it into Changi international airport, was being held under the Internal Security Act, which allows indefinite detention without trial.

He is closely linked to Noordin Mohammad Top, South East Asia's most wanted man, who has been behind every major attack on Westerners in Indonesia, including the Bali bombings, which killed 202 people.

Mas Selamat first came to prominence in December 2001 when he fled Singapore following an Internal Security Department operation against Jemaah Islamiyah but evaded capture until 2006 when Indonesian police arrested him on Bintan island and handed him over to the Singaporean authorities.

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