US embassy bombing `suspect` sues govt


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Jul 14, 2007
US embassy bombing `suspect` sues govt

2007-12-21 14:47:20
By Correspondent Rosemary Mirondo

A businessman who was suspected of taking part in the August 7, 1998 US embassy bombing attack in Dar es Salaam, which claimed many lives and left several others injured, has sued the government demanding 3bn/- in damages.

Rashid Saleh Hemedi filed the suit at the High Court in the city on Wednesday through advocate Jerome Msemwa against the Minister for Security and Public Safety, the Director of Public Prosecution and Attorney General.

He is asking the court to order the government to pay him the said damages for false imprisonment, defamation and malicious prosecution, economic and financial loss and other sufferings in relation to a criminal case he was charged with.

Hemedi alleges that on August 25, 1998 he surrendered himself to police headquarters in the city after he had received information that the police were looking for him on allegations that he was a terrorist and was involved in the US embassy bombing attack.

The following day, he further says, he was taken to his house situated at the junction of Amani and Chui streets at Kariakoo in the city, which the police searched, and later took him to Msimbazi police station where he was locked up for two days.

According to his plaint, the police took him to Buguruni police station where he was remanded for two weeks.

During his incarceration, he further alleges, he was subjected to rigorous interrogation by the police and US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents.

During investigations, Hemedi says, the police took away some of his clothes and other belongings valued at 5m/-, which were later sent to the US for further investigation. According to him, the belongings have not been handed back to date.

He alleges further that he was accused together with a highly organised and sophisticated gang of terrorists of having taken part in the said embassy bombing, allegations that were unfounded and based on incredible evidence and were unproven.

On September 21, 1998, he says he was charged at the Kisutu Resident Magistrate`s Court with conspiracy to commit murder. He remained in remand for two years until July 21, 2000 when he was granted bail by the High Court.

At the end of the trial, the court acquitted him after it was satisfied that he was not involved in the said bombing along with the other alleged conspirators because there was no evidence to link him with the embassy bombing.

He says in his plaint that while in custody his motor vehicle spare parts business was closed, causing him immense loss.

As a result of the false imprisonment and malicious prosecution, he says, he was forced to sell all his business tools to meet legal costs.

Hemedi alleges that the arrest, detention and institution of criminal proceedings against him were motivated by bad faith, hatred and aimed at harming his reputation.

He says that in the eyes of the public he was and is still perceived as a dangerous terrorist and a social misfit.

The wrongful prosecution has caused embarrassment, shock and his dignity and reputation has been gravely injured.

* SOURCE: Guardian
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