State Security Court issues verdict in Al Qaeda affiliate case

ABU DHABI: The state security division of the Federal Supreme Court on Tuesday issued its verdict in the case of the 15 defendants accused of joining and funding Jabhat Al Nusra and the Ahrar Al Sham Movement, two subsidiaries of the terrorist Al Qaeda organisation.

Four of the defendants were tried in absentia and the other 11 were tried, in their presence, at the court, presided over by Judge Mohammed Al Jarrah Al Tenaiji.

The sentences ranged between life imprisonment and acquittal.

The court also ordered the confiscation of the seized gun and electronic gadgetry, and the closure of the website run by the first defendant who was sentenced to 15 years in prison and a fine of AED1 million. The convicted foreigners will be deported after serving their sentences.

1- First defendant, M E E: fifteen years in prison, a fine of AED1 million on counts 2, 3 (amended), 5 and 8, confiscation of the seized electronic equipment involved in the crime, and closure of his website.

2- Second defendant, S M Gh: Three years in prison on count 3 (amended).

3- Third defendant, A M B: Fifteen years in prison on counts 2, 3 (amended), 4 and 5.

4- Fourth defendant M E B and fifth defendant A A B: Seven years in prison for making explosives and polluting the environment. Acquittal of the sixth defendant A M I and the seventh defendant O M B on these two charges.

5- Fifth defendant A A M: One year in prison and a fine of AED15,000 on count 7 (amended), i.e. possession of a weapon (not a firegun). The court ordered the confiscation of the seized gun.

6- Sixth defendant A M I and seventh defendant O M B sentenced to ten years in prison, and H H E, I A H, A H B, A N Gh sentenced to life imprisonment, for count 1 involving defendants 6 to11.

7- Acquittal of twelfth defendant A M N, thirteenth defendant Kh A H, fourteenth defendant A M S and fifteenth defendant A H R on counts 4 and 5.

8- Deportation of all the foreigners after they will have served their sentences.

The sentences were handed down by the court after it had known the facts of the case and all related documents, investigations, after it had heard the defendants, the public prosecution, and after it had viewed the proofs and experts’ reports.

The court charged the defendants with joining, and collecting funds for, and transferring fund to Jabhat Al Nusra and Ahrar Al Sham Movement, two subsidiaries of the terrorist Al Qaeda organisation outside the UAE, making unauthorised explosives and polluting the environment through detonating dangerous and banned materials.

The session today was attended by a number of relatives of the defendants, the defence lawyer, representatives of the media and members of UAE civil society organisations.