A terror suspect who was shot and seriously injured when a multi-agency security team led by officers from the Anti-Terror Police Unit (ATPU) raided his hideout in Tudor area in Mombasa has been released on a Sh5 million bond by a Mombasa court.
Salim Aboud Khalid alias Survivor, who is now on a wheelchair, suffered serious gunshot wounds in the wee hours of September 11, 2019 and now requires an operation to correct his injured arm and limb.
His lawyer Yussuf Aboubakar urged Mombasa Chief Magistrate Edna Nyaloti to free him so that he can seek specialized treatment.
“The suspect suffered broken arms and limb. He needs a specialized gadget for operation but the family cannot assist him because he is in custody. We urge the court to grant him bond so that he can be assisted to have the operation done,” Aboubakar said.
Khalid is charged with being a member of Al-Shabaab and obstructing a police officer from carrying out his duty.
The court heard that the suspect attempted to attack police constable Edapal Lowasa with a knife.
The charge sheet states that the suspect, with intent to maim, unlawfully attempted to strike the officer with a knife in Tudor, Mombasa on September 11.
The State the bond bail application saying that he has links in Syria, Somalia and three other countries and has participated in the planning and execution of terror attacks by Al-Shabaab militants in northern Kenya and at the Coast region.
The prosecution said that Khalid is a Shabaab operative who has coordinated various terror attacks within the country.
Relying on an affidavit filed by ATPU officer Dickson Indaru, State Counsel Erick Masila told the court that the suspect , who has survived several death traps, has been on the run and on the police most wanted list since June last year over links with the Somalia-based militants.
Masila said that the suspect had been hiding in Tanzania, where he fled to in 2013 after two of his accomplices were shot dead in Mombasa.
In addition, the police said that in the recent past, there have been planned terror attacks in the Coast region, which are believed to have been organized by the militant group which the accused person is believed to be a member of.
“There is a reasonable apprehension that if the accused person is released on bail, he will run away and it will be hard to trace him going by the fact that he has been on the run since last year. He is a flight risk and has no known fixed abode,” Masila said.
The court also has heard that investigations are still on course and that the suspect, who is well connected, may interfere with them.
“This crime is transnational and organized involving a syndicate operating in Kenya, Uganda, South Sudan, Tanzania, Somalia and other countries hence investigations will extend beyond Kenya,” Masila said.
The magistrate said there were no compelling reasons presented by the prosecution to illustrate how the accused person will interfere with the case by intimidating witnesses and interfere with the investigations.
Nyaloti further said that the arresting officer used excessive force whereas the accused was only armed with a knife.
The suspect was ordered to report fortnightly to the anti-terrorism police unit as the case progresses.
By Hussein Abdullahi