The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya: Police Thwart Al-Shabaab Jailbreak Plot

A plot by al Shabaab militants to forcefully free their colleagues detained in Kenyan prisons has been thwarted by the police. The plan was to have the two major terror suspects, Germaine Grant and Thabit Yahya, among others, released from custody.

A three page top security report obtained by the Star reveals that the release was to be followed by imminent terror attacks in Mombasa. Fuad Abubakar was to head the release operation at Mombasa's Shimo la Tewa Prison.

Abubakar was arrested with Grant, a German, in possession of explosives in Kisauni Mombasa in unsuccessful bombing in December last year.

The report, branded a top secret, reveals that the explosives Yahya and Abubakar were arrested in possession with were to be used in attacks. Abubakar escaped from a house on Sunday when police officers from anti-terrorism police trailed him to Majengo in Mombasa.

Head of anti-terrorism police unit Njeru Mwaniki said they are looking for Abubakar who has been ignoring police summons. "We strongly believe he slipped through the window during the Sunday raid. But we are after him," said Mwaniki on phone.

The report reveals that Yahya receives messages from the alShabaab which has been planning to break him out. Police spokesman Erick Kiraithe yesterday said there are attempts to free the suspects and an imminent terror attack in the coastal town.

"We have reports of such attacks. We will not give them a chance," said Kiraithe on phone. Coast prison commandant James Kodiany said the prison's security system can deal with any attempts at a jail break.

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