Somaliland: Terrorism Convict Still in Prison despite Expiry of Custodial Sentence

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Ahmed Ibrahim Ahmed better known as Darmaan was due for release on May 17 2015. But he is still being held in custody

Somalilandsun – Having served his prison term for a crime he denies of ever being involved in conspiring to commit terrorist acts in Somaliland, Ahmed Ibrahim, a 31 year old former maroodi jeeh region basketball player team captain that won several regional tournaments before his arrest and conviction, is still being held by Somaliland authorities after he finished his prison sentence.
Ahmed who is known locally by his friends as “Darmaan” worked as a logistics officer at a local newspaper called Saxafi, prior to his arrest on the night of February 18, 2013, he went out to buy a stack of 500 A2 size printing press papers and a box of plates which the office needed for the morning edition, being use to he delivered it at the local printing press warehouse where most of the city’s newspapers are printed, packaged and ready for distribution across the country. Mr. Ibrahim on that night was driving newspapers chairman personal vehicle model White Toyota Crown Royal Salon 1998 or 99 model, with the license plate number (SL 46992), was pulled over by the Somaliland intelligence agency and arrested on the sport, later Mr. Ibrahim was arraigned along with 5 other suspects facing charges ranging from planning to commit terrorist acts to acting as accomplices to the offense.

After spending about a year in detention, Mr. Ibrahim or “Ahmed Darmaan” was sentenced by the state regional court of Hargeisa judge Faisal Ismail Abdilahi and sentenced to 5-year’s prison term, but, the appeal’s court reduced that sentence to 3 years.
During that same preceding the other five co-suspects (4 of them worked for the intelligence agency) who faced charges of abetting or failing to report “Ahmed Darmaan’s” plans to commit terrorism within the country. But, Judge Faisal found the agents guilty and gave them lesser softer sentence, and returned back to their jobs working for the Intel agency.
Mr. Ibrahim was due for release on May 17, 2015, from prison, but, he is still being held in custody and his mother Mako Ahmed Warsame and elder brother Abdifatah Dheeg Ahmed (Owner of the car driven by Mr. Ibrahim) know the reason why their son and brother has not been released been unable to know from Hargeisa Central Prison, despite him completion of his prison sentence as he was ordered by the court during his trial.
Somaliland General Attorney Hassan Ali, Somaliland Police Commissioner Abdilahi Fadal Imaan, Intelligence Agency Director Jam Botan and officials from the department of corrections are all avoiding to explain why Mr. Ibrahim is still in their custody and not freed?
“I met evey single official at their office to ask for an explanation as to why is my brother not released yet. But, not a single official would tell me and mother Mako of illegal imprisonment,” said Abdifatah Dheeg Ahmed charmain of Saxafi and brother of the prisoner.
Mr. Ibrahim’s attorney Mohamed Suleiman is frustrated by the ignorant and evasive nature authorities to illegally continue the incarceration and without bringing forward any criminal charges, despite the expiry of his prison sentence is an insult to justice and the constitution.
“These illegal steps taken by the government of Somaliland, treat terrorist suspects is not only a slap in the face to justice but also alienates the victim’s family and community from ever trusting the government” Attorney Suleiman asserted.
While trying to find out who was exactly responsible for Mr. Ibrahim confinement, his relatives came across at least one undisclosed security official who told them the government does not have the authority or power to release you’re son, but, is instructed from a foreign security interest to have his detention extended indefinitely.
While the elder brother, Abdifatah, confronted the Police Commissioner with that information in a written, but, the Police commissioner neither denied nor confirmed the allogations confronted with by the elder brother of involvement by foreign intelligence to extend Mr. Ibrahim’s detention.
“Although he alluded at one point to the British security personnel who train some of the Somaliland intelligence agents, are the ones behind my brother’s confinement, he was however mostly ambiguous and nervous in his response which you could tell by just looking at his face.” Abdifatah pointed out.
“Ahmed Darmaan’s” relatives believe that the terrorist charges brought up against him were fabricated by the security apparatus, so they could persuade him into working for the agency as an informant. Since, his late older brother Mohamed Ibrahim, who was implicated in a similar case of a failed terror plot on September30, 2005.
After spending about three years in prison, the older Mr. Ibrahim was pardoned by then President Mr. Dahir Riyale Kahin, along with 3 other prisoners who also were serving sentences relating to terorism. There was no official explanation for the clemency granted to the 3 convicts, but it was later revealed that one of the pardoned prisoners, named “Ahmed-Keyse” had actually worked as a spy for the American intelligence service “CIA”.
President Riyale was said to have come under intense U.S pressure to have “Ahmed-Keyse” released.
Darmaan’s relatives cite his late brother’s background is why he was brought up terrorism charges were against him in the first place.
“When the case collapsed due to lack of evidence during the trial, the Intelligence services along with the prosecution illegally negotiated with the court’s judge to issue a guilty verdict and sentence him to incarceration” Abdifatah said. But according to Mr. Ibrahim’s mother there has been a tribal element involved in the case as well.
“There is no doubt in my mind the innocence verdict of the other 5 suspects, because its clan related and kinship to both the Police commissioner and the intelligence director.” Mr. Ibrahim’s mother Mrs. Mako Ahmed told us.
It remains to be seen if Mr. Ibrahim’s fate of being released from prison after serving his term as he was prescribed by the court judge after he was found guilty, nevertheless, the more important question remains. Which is, when will justice be served? To citizens as Mr. Ibrahim who was accused and found guilty to something he still denies till this day, which he and his family have endured so much pressure from the local intelligence agency, who terrorized on a nightly raids, illegal searches on gun point with women and children in the house, witnessing the entire drama.
The British government foreign office along with several other international intelligence agencies are poised in showing tremendous innocence and sympathy to the local authorities in providing basic military type fully armed training that is intended to protect the public, but, in reality is intended to serve their own interest in gaining access to information that will eventually lead and apprehension of individual suspects who may be involved in a illegal activity.
Source: Haatuf Newspaper

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