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Court halts bail release of JKIA explosion suspects

The High Court has temporarily halted a decision by a magistrate to release on bond four men  charged with carrying out a terrorist attack at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport’s Java restaurant.

Justice Msagha Mbogholi made the decision following an application by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), only a few hours after the lower court released the suspects on a Sh20 million bond.

This effectively means the suspects will stay in police custody pending the hearing of the application by the DPP.

The lower court had ordered Hassan Abdi, Mohamed Osman, Ilyas Yusuf and Garad Hassan to have two Kenyan sureties of a similar amount.

The accused also face more than 12 counts including being in Kenya unlawfully and possessing explosives.

Nairobi acting chief magistrate Doreen Mulekyo, while granting the accused bail, said the court was aware of past terrorism acts in the country.

According to the prosecution, the four carried out the January 16 attack at JKIA Unit One together with others not before court.

Prosecutor Fridah Mwanza had sought to have them denied bail after they made their application through lawyer Chacha Mwita.

“The State is opposed to the application for release on bond. The accused are not Kenyans and have no fixed residence,” said Ms Mwanza.

The prosecution also relied on an affidavit of inspector Leonard Bwire who said the Anti-Terrorist Police Unit had information that the attack at Java restaurant was executed by the suspects together with others still at large.