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February 19, 2019

Kitale trader arraigned over al Shabaab links

Businessman Abdisak Hussein appeared in an Eldoret court on suspicion of being a financier of al Shabaab. / FILE
Businessman Abdisak Hussein appeared in an Eldoret court on suspicion of being a financier of al Shabaab. / FILE

A Kitale businessman has been arrested over suspicion that he is a financier of the al Shabaab terror group.

Police suspect Abdisak Hussein, who operates petrol stations in Kitale town, has been financing illegal activities linked to terrorism.

He appeared in a court in Eldoret and chief magistrate Charles Obulutsa allowed police to detain him for seven days in order to complete investigations.

“The suspect shall be detained at Eldoret police station and be presented to court after one week,” Obulutsa ordered.

William Ndune, an investigations officer attached to the Anti-Terror Unit, said the trader had links with terror activities in the country.

“We urge the court to allow us to detain him for a week. Investigations are at an advanced stage,” he said.

Ndune said police want to access the suspect’s mobile phone transactions.

They also plan to visit the suspect's home in Wajir home to record statements from locals.

However, Hussein accused the police of harassing him and denied any links to terror activities.

“Your honour they have confiscated my mobile phone and frustrated me yet they are only relying on hearsay from my business rivals in Kitale,” Hussein told the court.

He said the case against him was a fabrication.

“I'm a Kenyan from Wajir county doing genuine oil business in Kitale,” Hussein said.

He further complained that police detained him for more than 24 hours before taking him to court as required by the law.

Ndune denied the trader's claims and said he had been arrested based on investigations.

The magistrate directed that the case to be mentioned on February 19.

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