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British bomb suspect in Kenya had IED bomb kit

21 June 2014, 09:32

Mombasa - A Briton on trial in Kenya for plotting bomb attacks had chemicals that could be used to make "highly volatile" explosives, a British detective told a Mombasa court on Friday.

Suspected British militant Jermaine Grant, accused of ties to Somalia's Al-Qaeda-linked Al Shabaab and plotting attacks, was arrested in December 2011 in the Kenyan port city with various chemicals, batteries and switches.

Prosecutors say he planned to use them to make explosives. He denies the charges.

"These items can be found with someone with the intention of constructing an IED, (improvised explosive device)," John Reilly, from London's Metropolitan police, told the court.

The chemicals were capable of making a "highly volatile explosion", he added.

The detective also provided evidence from mobile telephone SIM cards found on Grant, including one with an apparently coded message warning of "lions inside."

Prosecutors have accused Grant, a Muslim convert, of working with fellow Briton Samantha Lewthwaite -- the fugitive widow of British suicide bomber Germaine Lindsay, who blew himself up on a London Underground train on July 7, 2005, killing 26 people.

Lewthwaite, a mother-of-three and daughter of a British soldier, is wanted by Kenyan police and there was some speculation that she was involved in last year's Westgate mall siege in Nairobi.

Grant is believed to have become radicalised as a teenager in the same British prison where "shoe bomber" Richard Reid first turned to Islam.

Reid, who claimed he was an Al-Qaeda recruit, is serving a life sentence in the United States for trying to blow up a flight from Paris to Miami in December 2001.

In December 2011 Grant pleaded guilty to charges of being in the country illegally and lying about his nationality, for which he was sentenced to two jail terms of two years, to run concurrently.

The trial continues on August 18.



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