This Thursday, Brussels Appeal Court issued sentences of 2-18 years’ imprisonment in the case of the “Somali terrorist threat”.
Six people were sentenced for taking part in the activities of a terrorist group, specifically the Al-Shahab militias in Somalia, in 2011 and 2012. In the first instance, 18 individuals were sentenced in the case. The judge confirmed the earlier 18-year sentence against Rachid Benomari. 42-year-old Frenchman Benomari was found guilty of participation in a terrorist organisation as leader. Along with 3 other defendants, Rachid Benomari was smuggled across the Kenyan border into Somalia, in 2011.
They spend 4 months with the Al-Shabab militia and then crossed back into Kenya in 2012 where they were arrested for illegal residence.
In 2012, one of them was released and then arrested at Zaventem airport on his return journey to Brussels. The three others were extradited to Belgium in 2014.
The judge also issued two 5-year sentences, one of 4 years, one partially suspended 5-year sentence, and one 2-year sentence against 2 other defendants who were charged with participating in terrorist activities as members.