Three arrested for taking pictures of Kempinski

Police believe they were carrying out surveillance for purposes a terrorist attack

In Summary

• Police say they were in possession of several items including Kenyan IDs, mobile phones and electronic gadgets

• They are being investigated for conspiracy to commit a terrorist act

Villa Rosa Kempinski
Villa Rosa Kempinski
Image: FILE

Police are seeking five days to detain three terror suspects arrested on Sunday taking pictures of Villa Rosa Kempinski hotel in Nairobi.

Abdi Mohammed Guled, Ibrahim Mohammed Guled and Mohammed Bashi Aden are said to have been in possession of several items including Kenyan IDs, mobile phones and electronic gadgets which police have forwarded to Anti-Terrorism Police Unit laboratories for forensic analysis. 

In an affidavit sworn by sergeant Joseph Mwiti attached to ATPU, the three were arrested on suspicion of carrying out surveillance at the hotel for purposes of carrying out a terrorist attack. 


“The respondents were covertly taking photographs at the hotel and when questioned, they did not give an explanation,” Mwiti told Milimani court's magistrate Elekta Rihani on Tuesday.

The investigating officer said he needed more time to collect details of all the persons the suspects have been in contact with both in Kenya and outside. 

“I want to retrieve their digital prints for forensic examination as well as examine their social media accounts. It is important for them to be detained by the ATPU to enable detailed criminal enquires to be carried out,” the officer said.

The court heard that intelligence reports so far show that the suspects have other associates at large. 

 “There is a need to carry out detailed interviews with the suspects and their associates to find out their co-conspirators,” Mwiti said.

The three are being investigated for conspiracy to commit a terrorist act, being a member of a terrorist group which attract sentences of a term not exceeding 20 years and 30 years respectively.


While seeking to have them detained, the officer urged the court not to grant the suspects bail pending the probe saying they are a flight risk. 


The court was informed that terrorists and their associates pose a great risk to national security.

Mwiti further urged the court to take judicial notice of previous terror attacks which have led to the death of Kenyans. 

The officer further urged the court to detain the three at a police station within Nairobi county. "The station should not be stated in open court due to security reasons."

The court was informed that the investigations are complex and require additional time as they involve a number of security agencies. 

“The respondents have other associates who are yet to be apprehended and their arrests are being vigorously pursued by the security agencies both within and outside the country,” Mwiti said. 

The ruling on whether they will be detained will be made on Wednesday. 

Edited by R.Wamochie