What you need to know:
- In spite of the development, police have warned Kenyans to be vigilant, saying that other suspects intend to go ahead in executing the terror plot
- When Mr Yahya appeared in court two weeks ago, State counsel Alexander Muteti said the suspect belonged to a criminal network with tentacles in Saudi Arabia, Somalia and Kenya
Security has been boosted at the Shimo la Tewa Prison in Mombasa after police uncovered a plot to raid the jail and free a prime terror suspect being held there.
It was part of a bigger plan to carry out a series of terror attacks at the Coast in which the suspect, Mr Thabit Jamaldin Yahya, was to be among a team of over 10 suicide bombers, according to an intelligence report seen by the Nation.
The suspect was detained after he was charged with murder following a grenade explosion at Bella Vista Club in Mombasa in May.
In spite of the development, police have warned Kenyans to be vigilant, saying that other suspects intend to go ahead in executing the terror plot.
“The attack is likely to involve suicide bombers and vehicle-borne explosives for major targets and also sporadic grenade attacks aimed at causing maximum effect and confusing responding security and rescue efforts. The period between the first attack and the second batch of attacks is not known,” reads part of the security report.
When Mr Yahya appeared in court two weeks ago, State counsel Alexander Muteti said the suspect belonged to a criminal network with tentacles in Saudi Arabia, Somalia and Kenya. He further said that the man had undertaken paramilitary training in Saudi Arabia and Somalia.
The court heard that he was trained in undercover operations, use of explosives, guns, surveillance, bodyguard duties and survival tactics.
The intelligence report also cited a Mr Rama saying he served as a cook for a Qaeda commander, Ali Saleh Nabhan, who was killed in an aerial attack by United States forces in Somalia in 2009.
The attacks were to be allegedly carried out by two teams, one led by Mr Fuad Abubakar Manswab and the other by a man identified only by an alias, Maalim Khalid.
Mr Manswab has been declared a fugitive after he failed to present himself to police last week. He was charged with being in possession of explosives but was granted a Sh2 million bond by the court.
Others mentioned in the intelligence report include Mr Hassan Omondi Owiti, alias Budapest and Budalangi. It links him to the killing of a policeman in another terror blast in Majengo, Mombasa, on October 16.
“Corroborative reports point at an imminent terrorist attack, especially within Mombasa city. They are assessed to be a continuation of plans that were disrupted in December last year when Fuad Abubakar and John Germain Grant were arrested,” the report further says.
Grant is the British national incarcerated for being in Kenya illegally and has terror-related cases pending in court.
He, too, is rated a high- profile suspect following his dramatic rescue from police custody in North-Eastern in 2009 during which al-Shabaab militants raided a police station and engaged officers in a fierce gun fight.
“Faud, who is out on bond, intimated four weeks ago that there would be major simultaneous attacks in Mombasa, the magnitude that would cripple any rescue efforts,” according to the report.