The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has sentenced two terrorism suspects, Abdullahi Mustapha Berrende and Saheed Adewumi to five years imprisonment for the recruitment of new members for an Iranian based terrorist organization.
Delivering Judgment in a 6-count terrorism charge brought against the convicts by the Federal Government, Justice Ahmed Ramat Mohammed held that, the statement of the first defendant showed that he had military training in Iran on the use of firearms.
Justice Mohammed, who held that such statement by the first defendant is described as confession of crime in law, cited Section 28 of the Evidence Act to buttress the point.
The Judge also found the evidence of the 7th and 8th prosecution witness as corroborative statements to that of the first defendant.
Justice Mohammed said, “On the whole, I found the first defendant guilty on count 1-6 and the second defendant guilty of count five and six.
“In view of the fact that the two defendants have spent five years in custody, I hereby sentenced the first defendant to five years imprisonment on each count, and sentenced the second defendant to five years imprisonment on count five and six and both sentences are to run concurrently”, the Judge held.
The two accused persons were said to have collected 3000 Euros and $20, 000 from the terrorist group in order to source and train terrorist-minded Nigerians fluent in English language.
They were said to had, on or before September 2011 and December 2012, at Tehran in Iran, rendered support to the group via provision of materials and terrorism trainings on use of firearms and other weapons.
The Federal Government had told the court in the course of trial that some of the persons that benefited from their training, among whom included Suleiman Olayinka Sake and Aminu Mohammed Yusuf, are currently at large.
Their alleged offence is punishable under section 5(1) and 8 of the Terrorism Prevention Act, 2013.
The Federal Government alleged that Berrende, while in Iran, had information to commit terrorism acts but concealed such information from security operatives, and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 8 (1) of the Terrorism Prevention Act 2011 as amended.
Count three stated that the 1st accused person had, at Tehran and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, collected foreign currencies in US Dollars and Euros to aid and abate the commission of terrorism acts, contrary to Section 13(1) (a) of the Terrorism Prevention Act 2011 and punishable under the same Act.
Berrende was equally accused in count four of recruiting persons for an Iranian terrorist organization an offence the Federal Government said it violated Section 10 of the Terrorism Prevention Act.
In count five and six, Berrende and Adewumi, were accused of conspiring to commit terrorism Act in Lagos in September 2011.
The Judge said the offence is contrary to Section 17 of the Terrorism Prevention Act, 2011, saying technological devices, including cameras, were found on them contrary to Section 12 of the TPA, 2011.