The Federal Government has filed eight charges including terrorism, murder and hostage taking, against an alleged leader of a splinter group of the Boko Haram sect, Mohammed Usman (a.k.a. Khalid Albarnawi), and five other defendants.
The other five co-accused persons were also said to be members of the Jama’atu Ansarul Muslimina Fi Biladis Sudan (a.k.a. Ansaru), a group described by the prosecution as a breakaway from Boko Haram.
The other co-accused persons named in the case marked, FHC/ABJ/CR/36/2017, are, Mohammed Saleh, Umar Bello (a.k.a. Abu Azzan), Mohammed Salisu (Datti), Yakubu Nuhu (a.k.a. Bello Maishayi) and Usman Abubakar (Mugiratu).
The defendants have been scheduled to be arraigned before Justice John Tsoho of the Federal High Court in Abuja on Tuesday.
The prosecution accused them of conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism contrary to Section 17 of Terrorism (Prevention) Act 2011 as amended in 2013 and punishable under the same section of the Act.
They were also accused of murder of “Internationally Protected Persons” contrary to Section (3) (a) of Terrorism (Prevention) Act 2011 as amended in 2013 and punishable under the same section of the Act.
The defendants were said to have in February 2013 at Ikirima Boko Haram Camp in Sambisa Forest “murdered seven internationally protected persons.”
The murdered expatriates were named as Carlos Bou Azziz, Brendan Vaughan, Silvano Trevisan, Konstantinos Karras, Ghaida Yaser Sa’ad (F), Julio Ibrahim El-Khouli and Imad El-Andari.
The alleged terrorists allegedly buried the bodies in a shallow grave.
In count four, the defendants were also accused of hostage taking contrary to Section 15(c) of Terrorism (Prevention) Act 2011 as amended in 2013 and punishable under the same section of the Act.
The defendants allegedly on February 18, 2013, at Life Camp Yard of the SETRACO Construction Company in Jama’are, Bauchi State “did knowingly seize and continue to detain” the seven expatriate workers.
The murdered expatriates were allegedly detained by the defendants “at Ikirima Boko Haram camp in Sambisa Forest for a period of about 10 days before their eventual murder and burial in a shallow grave.”
In count five, the defendants were accused of knowingly giving “an explicit condition for the release of the seven expatriates.”
The prosecution also accused the defendants of being members of the “Boko Haram splinter group known as Jama’atu Ansarul Muslimina Fi Biladis Sudan a.k.a. Ansaru, a proscribed terrorist group in Nigeria contrary to Section 16 (1) of Terrorism (Prevention) Act 2011 as amended in 2013 and punishable under the same section of the Act.”
They were also accused of being in possession of firearms without licence punishable under Section 27 (1) (a) (1) of the firearms Act Cap F28 LFN 2004.
The prosecution also alleged that a number of firearms were recovered from the alleged leader of ANSARU, Usman’s house at Rafin Guza residence, NDC layout Kaduna State sometimes last year.
The firearms found at the residence of Usman and which were said to be without licence, included, five AK47 rifles with serial numbers 75582, 439106, 4483, 53964 and 3792
An unserviceable AK47 rifle “with destroyed serial number,” nine detached bults of assault rifles, one locally-made revolver, two locally-made single barrel pistols, and two locally-made double barrel pistols were also said to have been recovered from Usman.
Also allegedly recovered from him were one locally-made incomplete short gun and three working parts of assault rifles.
The prosecution alleged that Usman “used” the firearms “together with other members of the proscribed ANSARU sect, to unleash terror against unsuspecting Nigerians, foreigners and the Nigerian state and you thereby committed an offence punishable under S.27 (1) (a) (i) of the firearms Act, Cap F 28 LFN 2004.”
All the six defendants were accused of “giving support to terrorist groups contrary to section 5 (1) (a) of Terrorism (Prevention) Act 2011 as amended in 2013”.
14 March, 2017