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Two terror suspects extradited to Belguim

13 March 2014, 21:54 William Korir

Nairobi - A Magistrate Thursday ordered the extradition of two foreign fugitives on international warrant of arrest over terror related charges to Belgium within ten days.

Principle Magistrate Joseph Karanja issued the extradition order of Mohammed Said alias Ben Abdellah Smail and Rachid Benomari following a letter written to the Director of Criminal Investigations by the Belgium government seeking their arrest and surrender.

The Algerian and French nationals respectively, said they did not intend to challenge the extradition request and agreed to abide by it.

“Having voluntarily listened to the submissions, my findings are that the two have on voluntary and on sworn oath agreed not to waive the extradition request by the Belgium government, I therefore order that the voluntary extradition be carried out within ten days from today with facilitation from the Belgium Embassy in Kenya,” said Magistrate Karanja.

According to the Director of Public Prosecution Keriako Tobiko, the Belgium government had requested for the arrest and surrender of the two fugitives who have been indicted by the Brussels Court of First Instance for terrorism and organized crimes related offences.

Said and Benomari are among five suspects arraigned  in Malindi on July 4 last year for being in the country illegally and arrived from Somalia with an intension to commit terrorism attacks in Kenya.

The two French speakers with Bouyahbaren Mustapha, who was not present in court yesterday, had confessed to have come from Somalia during interrogations.

However it was later discovered that they are wanted in Belgium and an international warrant of arrest had already been issued.

The three had pleaded guilty to being present in the country illegally and had been sentenced to one year imprisonment and upon completion of their jail term they were to be repatriated to their home countries.

The other two suspects, whom their case is still pending, are Kenyans who denied the charges against them.

“Information has been presented to me which would in my opinion authorize the issue of a warrant for the arrest of the fugitives, it is requested that the extradition process be instituted with a view of legally taking the three to Belgium after completion of their prison terms,” a letter to the Director of criminal investigations stated.

Magistrate Karanja also directed that Said and Benomari be remanded at the Kilimani police station in the meantime.

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