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Wed, 11 Dec 2019 14:55 GMT

British Terror Suspect Jailed for Possessing Explosives

Counterterrorism & Security

7Dnews London - AFP

Fri, 17 May 2019 21:46 GMT

On May 16th a Kenyan court sentenced British terror suspect Jermaine Grant to four-years in prison for possessing bomb-making materials, charges the accused extremist has long denied.

Furthermore, Grant—accused by Kenyan authorities of ties to East Africa militant group Al-Shabab—is already serving a separate nine-year sentence on forgery charges.

In December 2011, the Muslim convert was arrested in Mombasa by the police, who allegedly found chemicals, batteries and switches in his possession. The police said Grant was planning a bombing campaign against hotels popular with foreign tourists.

Grant denied the charges but was found guilty on April 24th by Chief Magistrate Evans Makori, who said there was sufficient evidence that Grant was in possession of the explosive materials. As a result, in December 2015 he was sentenced to nine years in jail on separate charges related to forgery. Earlier, he had pleaded guilty to being in the country illegally and lying about his nationality.

Kenyan prosecutors accused Grant of working with fellow Briton Samantha Lewthwaite, dubbed the "White Widow" by the British tabloid press. Notably, Lewthwaite is the widow of Germaine Lindsay, one of four radical militant suicide bombers who attacked the London transport network on July 7th 2005, which resulted in the deaths of 52 people. Even though there were repeated rumours, there has been no confirmed sighting of her since she gave Kenyan police the slip in Mombasa in 2011.

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.