State objects to halting trial of Kampala bomb suspects

Thursday November 17 2011

By ANTHONY WESAKA

The State yesterday objected to an application seeking to halt the trial of city bomb suspects before the International Crimes Division of the High Court, saying the petition is filed before a wrong court.
Principal State Attorney Joan Kagezi argued that the defence lawyers should have asked the Constitutional Court to halt the proceedings now before Justice Alphonse Chigamoy Owiny-Dollo, but not the very court to stay the same.

“We object for the stay of the proceedings before this court and it should be dismissed,” Ms Kagezi said, adding that court should proceed with the hearings that were slated to commence on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, eight out of the 12 bomb suspects went to the Constitutional Court, saying their prosecution is unconstitutional.

They are contesting the manner in which they were brought to Uganda from Kenya and Tanzania without an extradition order from court.

The suspects also said they were interrogated and ill-treated at various police stations, Rapid Response Unit in Kireka and other unknown places at the hands of intelligence officers from Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, USA and UK.

Deaths, injuries
The suspects are accused of being behind the July 11, 2010 bomb blasts at the Kyadondo Rugby Club and Ethiopian Village Restaurant in Kabalagala in which 80 people watching the football World Cup finals were killed and scores injured.

They face charges of murder, attempted murder and terrorism which upon conviction, attract a death sentence by hanging. The suspects want the Constitutional Court to among others, permanently stay all the pending criminal charges and proceedings against them and also prohibit the state from using any confession statements against them, obtained through trickery.
The judge will tomorrow at 9am give his ruling on the application.

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awesaka@ug.nationmedia.com

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