17 July 2012

Kenya: Iranians Linked to Terrorism Released On Sh2 Million Bail

Photo: Hezron Njorge/The Star
In the dock (file photo): Iranians Ahmed Mohammed and Sayed are charged with possession of explosives and suspected of plotting a series of terrorist attacks in Kenya.

TWO Iranian nationals arrested over terrorism links have been granted a cash bail of Sh2 million and a Kenyan surety of Sh5 million each.

Principal Magistrate Paul Biwott ruled that their rights have outweighed the fears raised by the prosecution. He added that the two should be presumed innocent until proven guilty. "The offence they are facing is bailable. I see no reasons to deny the accused person bail," he said.

The Magistrate however granted them stiff bail conditions which will require the two to report before the Anti Terrorism Police Unit (ATPU) twice in a week. They were also ordered to deposit their passports in court and reveal their residence to the commissioner of police for surveillance and for their own security. The judge also stated that if the two suspects are not able to raise the said bail, the matter shall be heard and concluded expeditiously by 30 of this month.

The prosecution had urged the court to deny the two bail on grounds that they are a threat to national security and that the lives of over 40 million Kenyans is at risk. The Investigation officer Erick Opagal had sworn an affidavit in court citing more grounds on why they should be denied bail. He stated that the suspects are international criminals who if granted bail will abscond.

It is also alleged that the ATPU had information of an eminent terrorist attack which was being planned by the tow Iranians together with others who are yet to be arrested. They face two charges among them being in possession of explosive materials and preparation to commit a felony. Trial begins on Monday next week.

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