A suspected al Shabaab returnee who went to church to confess his sins will be detained for 10 days. Mombasa chief magistrate Edna Nyaloti allowed an application by the state to have the suspect remain in custody for interrogation. The state said they were yet to complete their investigations which were in-depth. State counsel Erick Masila told the court the investigations included travelling to another county in Rift Valley where investigators are expected to collect more information. Masila further said the suspect should be detained for his own security as he may be targeted. According to an affidavit sworn by an officer from the DCI, the suspect was arrested on January 3. The DCI said they believe he is connected to al Shabaab and had just returned from Somalia. The state informed the court that the suspect might have vital information in connection with the terror group which may assist with investigations. The officer further revealed that a sim card recovered from the suspect had been forwarded for forensic analysis and its report might lead investigators to the web of other terror suspects and its organisers. The magistrate directed that the suspect be taken back to court on January 23.
The suspect is said to have gone to a church where he intended to confess his sins to a pastor. After hearing the confessions, the pastor told the suspect that they will have to involve the police. The pastor then escorted him to the Mariakani police station where he was arrested and detained before being handed over to the Anti-Terrorism Police Unit. According to a police source, the investigators will be trying to verify his claim that he crossed over to Somalia and came back. The source said they will also be trying to get information on whether the suspect had any accomplices and if they had any plans. He further said the investigators will be seeking to unravel the faces of the recruiters and funders of the terror group. The suspect’s arrest came days after another returnee was killed by unknown people in Kilifi county.