22 June 2012

Kenya: 15kg Explosives Powder Recovered in Mombasa

Photo: Capital FM
Iranian terror suspects Ahmed Mohammed and Sayed Mansour appearing in court.

Police in Mombasa yesterday recovered a powdered substance suspected to be used in the manufacturing of explosives. An Iranian terror suspect arrested at a hotel in Nairobi early this week led police officers to unearth the powder along Mama Ngina drive next Nyali Golf Club.

The 15kg powder, which was wrapped in two plastic bags, is suspected to be used for manufacturing explosives for a series of criminal activities in the country.

Police detectives and bomb experts from Nairobi recovered the powder that Coast police boss Aggrey Adoli said will be taken to Government Chemist for testing. "Our officers in Nairobi arrested two terror suspects of Iranian origin.

The two then revealed to the police that they had hidden some equipment and materials in Mombasa. They told the police that they intended to use them to commit various criminal activities in the country," said Adoli at police headquarters.

Adoli said the suspect had to be flown to Mombasa on Wednesday night alongside the criminal investigating officers and bomb experts to help in the search. "He will be flown back today to join his colleague under police custody in Nairobi for further interrogation concerning this powder and others if any," he said.

But sources said the suspect will be leading police in a series of investigations and that he was headed to Lamu from Mombasa yesterday on a similar mission before he and the other compatriot are arraigned in court.

The suspect according to Adoli had signaled corporation by giving them crucial information that will lead to total investigations on the motive of the two. This happened at a time when bomb experts and Anti Terror Police Unit officers were still scanning the two containers nabbed on Wednesday by police at Consolbase Container Freight station in Changamwe is ongoing.

The officers began to comb the container after Mombasa senior magistrate Joyce Gandani issued an order on an application by ATPU who suspected the container had explosives and that they wanted it searched. Coast ATPU boss Elijah Rop led a team of detectives including international bomb experts from the FBI that two containers had been hidden at the said CFS.

According to one of the ATPU officers who sought anonymity, "FBI tipped Kenya Police Intelligence over the 40-foot container at Consolbase CFS and we moved in swiftly to intercept.

Details of the origin and destination are still unknown." Adoli however downplayed the reports that the container had explosives and said that police were on a day to day random search at all the CFSs.

"Police have been there for last three weeks doing the random check as part of intensified surveillance against terror. There is no cause for alarm because it's a normal process," Adoli said.

Eyebrows were raised over the container search when journalists, who attempted to get to scene were barred by KK security guards under the direction of ATPU boss Elijah Rop who was present.

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