An Al Shabaab suspect linked to the recruitment and radicalization of youths in Mombasa has been arrested.

Abdulrazak Haji was arrested in Nyali on Wednesday and arraigned in a Nairobi court the following day.

He was picked from a Java restaurant by anti-terror police unit officers and later escorted to the division’s headquarters in Nairobi.

Police then took Haji to his house in Kileleshwa, where they recovered a mini pistol and a firearm license. Police said they were yet to confirm the authenticity of the license.

State counsel Duncan Ondimu asked Nairobi senior principal magistrate Martha Mutuku to allow police to remand Haji for five days as investigations continue.

Mutuku allowed police to detain the suspect for five working days.

In an affidavit produced in court, police claimed Haji was being used by al Shabaab to spy on Kenyan security agencies.

Haji was also spying on several shopping malls within Mombasa town and the Nyali areas in preparation for terrorist attacks during New Year festivities.
Police said they believe Haji was an al Shabaab agent recruiting and radicalizing youths for the terror group.

Haji is also believed to be offering logistical support and facilitating al Shabaab fighters from Lamu, Wajir and Mandera counties.

Corporal James Muthusi, who swore the affidavit, is leading the investigating team.

“I am investigating a case of soliciting and giving support for the commission of terrorist acts and advocating, promoting, advising or facilitating a terrorist act,” Muthusi said.

Police also claim that Haji has been in frequent communication, through his mobile phone, with the known terrorist who is wanted by police.

The court also heard that Haji is a flight risk, considering the seriousness of the charges he is facing, and could abscond court sessions if granted bond. Police asked the court to allow them to get all the data records and M-Pesa statements belonging to Haji, from Safaricom to help in the investigations.

Haji opposed his detention, saying there was no evidence to support the police allegations. He asked the court to release him on bail, promising to present himself at the Kileleshwa police station until the investigations were complete.

Mutuku directed that he be remanded for five days, saying the case touched on a matter of national security.