Terror cell 11 jailed over arms cache in Bahrain
Manama, March 19, 2014
Eleven members of a terrorist cell who stashed machine guns and bullets in a secret underground warehouse have been jailed for 15 years.
The cache included five AK-47s, five 9mm handguns, five silencers and 3,450 bullets, said a report in the Gulf Daily News (GDN), our sister publication.
They were hidden in a covert bomb-making factory that was purpose-dug at a farm in Tubli and were going to be used to target police and public figures, according to prosecutors.
The facility, established by a Bahraini who had just returned from Iran, was raided on July 3 last year after a tip-off.
Eleven men were jailed for 15 years by the High Criminal Court yesterday after being found guilty of possessing unlicensed firearms, bullets and making explosives.
The Bahrainis were also convicted of being part of a terrorist cell, while three of them were convicted of smuggling the weapons into Bahrain.
A 17-year-old convicted of the same charges was given a reduced sentence of five years due to his age.
The cell is said to have rented the farm from a Bahraini teacher, who is among those convicted along with his brother and his nephew.
"The court found the defendants guilty due to their confessions and their DNA and fingerprints found on the weapons and explosives," stated the court verdict.
"He (the teacher) rented the farm with the help of three of the defendants.
"The three defendants (aged 20, 21 and 22) smuggled the weapons into Bahrain and stored the weapons and explosives in the farm with the help of rest of the defendants.
"Investigations and the defendants' confessions proved that the weapons and explosives were going to be used in terrorist acts to target policemen and public figures, to cause chaos and terrify Bahraini people and residents in the country."
The weapons and explosives were confiscated by police, while all of the defendants were also fined BD1,000 ($2,640) each. - TradeArabia News Service