Two Iranians found guilty of Kenya terror plot

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Image caption,
Sayed Mansour (L) and Ahmed Mohammed are suspected of belonging to a vast terror network planning to attack US, British and Israeli targets in Kenya

A Kenyan court has found two Iranian men guilty of plotting to attack Western targets inside Kenya.

Ahmed Mohammed and Sayed Mansour were caught with 15 kilos (33 pounds) of explosives in the capital, Nairobi, last June.

They are accused of belonging to a terror network planning to blow up British, US or Israeli targets in Nairobi and the port city of Mombasa.

The pair, who deny all charges, face up to 15 years in prison.

Judges ruled that both men had been proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt of all terror-related charges.

Prosecutors said the suspects had explosives "in circumstances that indicated they were armed with the intent to commit a felony, namely, acts intended to cause grievous harm".

Swift action by the Kenyan police in apprehending the men had averted mayhem and a massive number of deaths, the court magistrate said.

The two Iranians arrived in Kenya on 12 June last year and travelled to Mombasa to pick up the powerful explosive RDX. They were arrested a week later in Nairobi. Officers discovered the explosives hidden at a golf course in Mombasa.

Another accomplice was still at large, police said.

Investigators believe the terror group has shipped more than 85 kilos of explosives into Kenya.

"The police have information that the [suspects] have a vast network in the country meant to execute explosive attacks against government installations, public gatherings and foreign establishments," said Sgt Erick Opagal of Kenya's Anti-Terrorism Police Unit.

The two Iranian suspects are due to be sentenced on 6 May.

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