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Court finds Mombasa man found with explosives guilty

A man who was in 2014 arrested with a vehicle full of explosives parked outside Mombasa police headquarters was yesterday found guilty of terror-related charges.

Abdiaziz Abdullahi was charged with nine counts at a Mombasa court. Three counts, including being a member of al Shabaab, were, however, dismissed.

Abdullahi was convicted for being in possession of the vehicle, “which was used to carry and conceal a improvised explosive devices intended to launch a terrorist attack.”

He was also found guilty of possessing six hand grenades, an AK-47 rifle and 270 bullets.

Senior principal magistrate Francis Kyambia said the prosecution had proven their case beyond any reasonable doubt.

He said the witnesses had proven the vehicle belonged to Abdullahi, and that he was aware of what it carried.

He further noted that with how the explosives were concealed,it was clear that he intended to commit an attack on Kenyan ground.

“The way the explosives were hidden in the car, Abdullahi had knowledge of the impending attack,” Kyambia said. However, Isaak Noor, the co-accused, was acquitted of all the charges.

Kyambia said the prosecution had failed to link him to either being a member of a terror group or had any information of the vehicle.

He said Noor was blindly used by Abdullahi as a driver, and was not aware of the hidden explosives.

“According to the evidence produced, Noor was the errand boy, who was sent to go park the car in Changamwe and was not aware there were any explosives in the car,” Kyambia said. The court was told the car was parked outside the police headquarters for a week.

The anti-terror police unit didn’t know it was packed with full explosives, connected to a mobile detonator.

The vehicle was later thoroughly searched after US counterterror officers and FBI noticed the vehicle and found it was marked on the international alert list.

After his conviction Abdullahi through lawyer Chacha Mwita pleaded with the court to grant him a lenient sentence. The court will hand Abdullahi sentence terms on August 25.

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