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Kenya charges more piracy suspects

MOMBASA, Kenya, May 11 – Another group of eleven suspected Somali pirates were arraigned in a Mombasa court on Monday and charged with attacking a French vessel.

The eleven were charged before Mombasa Chief Magistrate Catherine Mwangi with piracy contrary to section 69 (1) of the penal code cap 63 Laws of Kenya.

The suspects, through an interpreter, denied the charges in which they were accused of attacking MV FNS Nivose. The suspects were not represented.

They are further accused of possessing two AK 47 rifles, one RPG 7, six RPG launchers and one knife; they attacked Nivose and at the time of such act put in fear the lives of the crewmen of the said vessel.

The suspects were arrested by the French navy on patrol at the high seas of the Indian Ocean and were handed to Kenyan authorities on May 8. They were captured onboard two skiffs and a "mother-ship" more than 500 nautical miles off the Kenyan coast.

The accused are Ahmed Abdikadir Hersi alias Ahmed Abdulahi Hersi, Abdirahim Mohammed Roble alias Abdalla Him, Abdullahi Salat Roble alias Abdullah Salaa, Abdullahi Yusuf Mohamed alias Abdulay Yusuf, Abdullahi Mohamud Jama alias Abdullah Mahmud.

Others are Abdi Dahir Ahmed alias Abdidahir Ahmed, Ahmed Maalim Omar alias Ahmed Omar, Ahmed Hassan Adow alias Tahab Hassan Adu, Ahmed Mohamed Osman alias Ahmed Mohamed, Abshir Ahmed Hassan alias Abshir Ahmed Hassan and Omar Ibrahim Jemale.

State Counsel Alexander Muteti opposed the suspects being released on bond.

"The suspects are not Kenyans and can not be bonded at this early stage. I oppose them to be released on bond," Muteti told the magistrate.

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"Cases of piracy have become a global concern and this case need to be given the seriousness it deserves and I object the suspects to be bonded," added Mr Muteti.

The ruling on whether they should be released on bail is due on Thursday. The suspects have been locked at Shimo La Tewa Prisons in the meantime.


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