Australian officials have confirmed that data recovered from a home flight simulator owned by the captain of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 showed that someone used the device to plot a course to the southern Indian Ocean, where the missing jet is believed to have crashed, the AP reports. There has been confusion over what was found on Capt. Zaharie Ahmad Shah's flight simulator since New York magazine reported last week that an FBI analysis showed Zaharie had conducted a simulated flight to the region less than a month before the plane vanished along a similar route. Malaysia rejected the report as false. But Australia's Joint Agency Coordination Center confirmed on Thursday that the captain's simulator did indeed show that "someone had plotted a course to the southern Indian Ocean."
"The MH370 captain's flight simulator showed someone had plotted a course to the southern Indian Ocean," JACC said in an email to Reuters. But "the simulator information shows only the possibility of planning. It does not reveal what happened on the night of the aircraft's disappearance, nor where the aircraft is located," the agency said in another email. New York notes that Zaharie has long been considered a prime suspect in the plane's disappearance, though officials from Australia and other countries have been more suspicious than Malaysian investigators. Malaysia, Australia, and China have decided to suspend the search for the plane when the current search area has been fully checked, which should happen by the end of this year. (Read more MH370 stories.)