Saturday blasts suspect, 3 minors freed by ATPU

March 12, 2012 6:42 pm


VP Kalonzo Musyoka visits victims of grenade attacks at KNH/VPPS
NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 12 – Four suspects, including three minors arrested over Saturday’s grenade attacks that killed six people and wounded more than 60 others were set free late on Monday and ordered to report back to the Anti-Terrorism Police Unit on Tuesday morning.

Chacha Mwita, a lawyer representing the four suspects told Capital News the suspects were freed on Monday night at around 9pm local time.

“Sylvester Opiyo and the three minors have been released but issued with a P22 (free bond) and ordered to report to the Anti Terrorism Police Unit (ATPU) at 9am tomorrow (Tuesday),” Mwita said.

They were released under section 22 of the Police Act which empowers the police to issue a suspect in a case they are investigating with a P22 form indicating what crime he/she is being investigated for and the date of the next appointment.

”Police have indicated to them why they were being held and why they are being investigated,” their lawyer said.

Mwita had earlier protested that police declined to grant him access to the suspects, particularly the minors who were interrogated in his absence.

Mwita said he had not been allowed access to Sylvester Opiyo aka Musa Osodo and the three minors who include a Form One student, who were picked up as they assisted Opiyo’s sister move into a house in Nairobi’s Umoja estate.

“I have not been allowed access to them… I was not allowed in any of the interrogations,” the lawyer had earlier told Capital News on Monday.

“Since the suspects were arrested on Saturday at 11am, 24 hours have lapsed and they ought to have been arraigned in court but this has not happened. It is against the law,’ the lawyer protested before the suspects were released.

Anti-Terrorism Police Unit officers have been interrogating the four suspects on their movements before and after the attacks that killed six people and wounded more than 60 others at the Machakos Bus terminus on Saturday night.

Police believe some or all of them knew something about the four grenade attacks that were hurled at a crowd from a moving vehicle.

On Monday, Nairobi Provincial Police chief Antony Kibuchi told Capital News the four are prime suspects of the attacks but he did not provide more details and APTU officers declined to comment on the matter.

Opiyo had been in the police watch list since December last year when police headquarters released his photograph and claimed he planned a series of attacks in the capital, Nairobi. He surrendered for interrogation and was released immediately after.

Internal Security Minister Professor George Saitoti spoke briefly about the suspects being interrogated over the Saturday blast when he was summoned by a parliamentary committee but he did not provide finer details.

“We have arrested suspects and investigations are going on, we must get to the bottom of this matter,” the minister said.

The suspects were arrested as they helped a sister to Opiyo move houses in Umoja estate in Nairobi.


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