The alleged mastermind of the 9/11 attacks, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, reportedly asked his CIA captors if he could design a vacuum cleaner.

The Pakistan-born mechanical engineering graduate made the request during a period of detention in Romania in 2003, the Associated Press reports.

A former CIA official told the news agency that he used online guides to re-design the household appliance.

The CIA wanted to make sure its prisoners stayed sane, AP reported.

“We didn’t want them to go nuts,” the former senior CIA official told the news agency.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was arrested in 2003 and underwent harsh interrogations in Poland. He was forced to go without sleep, and underwent waterboarding, or simulated drowning.

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