, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 19 – Two terror suspects linked to a vehicle that was found laden with explosives in Mombasa have been arraigned before court facing seven counts, including a plot to murder.
The two identified in court documents as Abdiaziz Abdullah Abdi and Isaak Noor Ibrahim were also charged with being members of the Al Shabaab terror group and for being illegally in possession of firearms.
They additionally face charges of having a vehicle bearing fake number plates. “Jointly with others not before court with the intent to deceive and without authority made a vehicle number plate KAN 410E purporting it to be a genuine document issued by registrar of motor vehicles,” State Counsel Peter Kiprop told the court.
The two who were charged before Resident Magistrate Richard Odenyo on Wednesday were not represented by counsel but denied all the charges and were remanded at the Shimo la Tewa prison until May 22 when their case will be heard.
Odenyo also granted the prosecution’s request to have the explosives found in the vehicle detonated in the interest of national security.
“We appeal to the court to grant the prosecution an order to destroy the explosives that not only pose a threat to the police but the public at large,” Kiprop had asked.
The two suspects believed to be of Somali origin were arrested last week in the Changamwe area while heading in the direction of Mombasa town.
But it wasn’t until Monday that the police discovered explosives concealed under the seats of the four wheel-drive vehicle the terror suspects were arrested in.
“Our intelligence officer sharing information with both local and international agencies intercepted their communication and managed to track down the suspects near Changamwe,” Coast County Commissioner Nelson Marwa said on Tuesday.
“We recovered six grenades, an AK-47 rifle, 270 rounds of ammunition and five detonators that included a cell phone,” Marwa said.
Also found in the vehicle were six cylindrical bombs of 10 kilogrammes each, with capacity to bring down a high-rise building.
He also reported that they arrested a third terror suspect on Tuesday who they believe was the mastermind and who they believe had escaped when his accomplices were arrested on March 11.
He is however yet to be charged.