A Kenyan arrested on Friday last week by anti-terror police over suspected links to the Westgate attack has been charged with being a member of al Shabaab.
Swaleh Abdallah Said was yesterday charged with possessing explosives and preparing to commit murder in Mombasa. He was allegedly found with two hand grenades at 7.40am on Friday last week at Likoni in Mombasa.
Said denied he is a member of al Shabaab and has been recruiting youths from Majengo and Lamu to fight in Somalia. A Muslim cleric last week accused him of recruiting him alongside eight other youths to join al Shabaab in Somalia.
Prosecutor Simon Waithaka asked the court to deny the suspect bail because he might flee to Somalia.
He cited a case in which Kenyan Fuad Abubakar who was charged with terror links alongside Briton Jermaine Grant skipped bail after he was released on a Sh20 million bond by a Mombasa court.
"The memories of the Westgate mall attack are still fresh in our minds. We believe he is a security threat to the Kenyan population and oppose his release," said Waithaka.
However, Said said he is a Kenyan and has a permanent residence in Mombasa where he can be quickly located. The court declined to release said on bond. The hearing date was set for January 16 next year.