Final witness testifies in the case involving Sh1.3bn drugs ship blown up at sea

The MV Al Noor explodes after it was blown up by Kenya Navy on the President’s orders on August 29, 2014. PHOTO: COURTESY.

Mombasa, KENYA: On Monday the final witness confirmed to a Mombasa court that 74 packages of sample extracted from the vessel destroyed following orders by President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2014 at Kilindin Port, contained heroine.

Ms Ruth Munene from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations said all the samples taken to government chemistry were positive, and upon the evaluation the drugs were worth sh. 1.3 billion.

Initially, Thomas Mwau a witness who worked with the ministry of mining told court he randomly took samples from 10 of the 250 bags seized on the ship in July 2014, that tested positive for gypsum, which he said was a legal component of cement.

The MV Al Noor vessel was destroyed on 29th August as  president  Kenyatta witnessed, according to a court order issued before the destruction of the ship, the trial magistrate had barred anyone from destroying the vessel.

Ms Munene further said heroine was stored in 33,200 litres of water and another was in 2,400 liters of diesel recovered.

She also said two knives were recovered in a vessel which was alleged to be used in opening the diesel tank.

According to the witness, the vessel’s captain and his deputy poured the heroine in diesel as a way to interfere with the evidence.

Ms Munene said Mr.Maur Bwanamaka was introduced to police officers as the shipping agent, who intended to clear the vessel.

“We even gave a notice asking the owner of vessel to come out but nobody had claimed the vessel before it was destroyed by the Kenyan government,” she said.

In the case, Yousuf Yaqoob, Yakoob Ibrahim, Saleem Muhammad, Bhatti Abdul Ghafour, Baksh Moula, Prabhakara Nair Praveen, Pak Abdolghaffer, Vikas Balwan, Muhammed Saleh, Khalid Agil Mohamed and Kenyans Mohamed Osman Ahmed and Maur Abdalla Bwanamaka are accused of trafficking by conveying in the cargo deck of the ship, 377.2kg of creamish granular heroin and liquid heroin.

The prosecution finally closed its case and set a week time for the submissions from both the defense and prosecution on no case to answer.