Garissa University terror convicts to get ruling on sentence appeal on Friday

The Milimani High Court in Nairobi is set to deliver a verdict on the appeal made by three Garissa University terror attack convicts on Friday, March 24. 

The convicts -Hassan Edin Hassan and Mohammed Abdi Abikar- were sentenced to serve 41 years in prison for their role in the April 2, 2015 attack on Garissa University, which claimed the lives of 148 individuals, most of whom were students.

Another convict, a Tanzanian national named Rashid Mberesero, who was found guilty of aiding the terrorist attack, was handed a life imprisonment sentence. However, he committed suicide at Kamiti Maximum Prison in 2020. 

The three convicts filed an appeal in a bid to have their sentences reduced or quashed altogether. During the appeal hearing in July 2022, the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) urged the High Court to uphold their conviction and sentence, arguing that it was justified in light of their horrific actions. 

The attack on Garissa University was one of the major attacks staged by the Somalia-based terrorist group Al-Shabaab on Kenyan soil.

The Tanzanian national, Mberesero, was found guilty of aiding the terrorist attack, which was planned and executed by Al-Shabaab militants. 

Magistrate Andayi, who passed the original sentence, noted that the attack had resulted in the loss of many innocent lives, leaving the public in a state of panic.

He said, “Having considered their mitigation, there is no person in the world who does not know the devastating effects of terror activities.” 

The judge found four out of the five suspects to have a case to answer. 

A total of 22 witnesses testified against them, including students who survived the attack. 

During the defence hearing, three accused persons opted to remain silent as one of them testified on oath on March 25, 2019.

Meanwhile, Sahal Diriy, alias Sahali Diriye Hussein, who was charged jointly with the three, was acquitted. 

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