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Shoddy investigations see terror suspects walk to freedom

02 October 2014, 17:35 Victor Tinto

Nairobi - Shoddy preparations have meant that many terror cases in the country end up gong down the drain, a worrying trend for the country.

Several terror suspects have been set free in the past due to shoddy research and investigations by the government prosecution team, leading to frustration from Kenyans.

The latest was the release of Pangani Police Station bombing suspect Dugal Ali, who was released Thursday by a Nairobi court for lack of evidence.

Dugal was owner of the vehicle which blew up and killed two police officers in the process.

Dugal was released after the court ruled that there was no proof from police that he indeed had prior knowledge of the impending attack that also killed the two terrorists.

The prosecution also failed to prove that he was part and parcel of a terrorist cell.

Read also: More than 20 Al Shabaab members killed in Somalia

Instead, it was proven by his defence team that he is a law abiding Kenyan and that he has also cooperated with police in the course of the investigations.

" There is no proof that the accused was in any way involved in the terror act and that he had prior knowledge of the impending activity".

" It has also not been proven beyond doubt that he sponsored the act and that he in any way moved to ensure that the act took place", Magistrate Lucy Mbugua said while releasing Dugal.

The decision follows a similar one that has taken place in Lamu, where Governor Issa Timamy was released by police for lack of evidence after initially arresting him for sponsoring the Lamu attacks that saw over 100 people killed.

Security expert Philip Mbugua admits that the government is not giving itself a good reputation by allowing such cases go south.

" It does not bode well or the government if they continue missing out on such high profile cases", he says.

" Kenyans want to see these cases being taken to conclusion but at the moment it is not happening and that is utterly frustrating", he adds.

The Judiciary has previously been accused of not helping matters in terms of prosecuting terror cases but Mbugua argues that basics of law cannot be ignored.

" The government must take charge of the situation. They must admit that there has been shoddy work from prosecution teams. They must do better".

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