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Germany Arrests Suspect in the Killing of Deyda Hydara, Shooting of Lawyer Ousman Sillah



By Sanna Camara

According to a press elease from Federal Prosecutor’s Office this morning, a member of the Jammeh hit squad has been arrested and a search conducted at the house of the suspect in connection with crimes committed in The Gambia between 2003 and 2006.

Below is a release:

“In the early hours of today (16 March 2021), the Gambian national Bai L. was arrested in Hannover, Germany, by officers of the Federal Criminal Police Office and the police of Lower Saxony on behalf of the Office of the Attorney General of Germany. An arrest warrant had been issued by the investigating judge of the Federal Supreme Court on 3 March 2021. In addition to his arrest, the suspect’s flat in Hannover was searched.

The accused is strongly suspected of crimes against humanity, murder and attempted murder (section 7, paragraph 1, no. 1 of the Criminal Code, 211, paragraphs 1 and 2, 25, paragraph 2, 22, 52, 53 of the Criminal Code).

In the arrest warrant, the accused is essentially charged with the following facts: Between December 2003 and December 2006, Bai L. belonged to a so-called “Patrol Team” of the Gambian Armed Forces (also known as “Junglers”) as a driver. This unit was used by the then-President of the Gambia to carry out illegal killing orders, among other things. The aim was to intimidate the Gambian population and suppress the opposition. Against this background, the accused was involved in a total of three such liquidation orders.

At the end of December 2003, the accused’s unit received an order to kill a lawyer in Banjul, the capital of The Gambia. In his capacity as driver, the accused transported the other members to the site of the attack. There, a member of the unit fired several shots at the lawyer, who survived the attack injured.

A year later, the “Patrol Team” killed a Gambian journalist who was critical of the government. For this purpose, the unit, with the help of Bai L., stopped the journalist’s car on a road in the town of Kanifing. Subsequently, two members of the unit killed him by shooting him several times, with Bai L. transporting one of the shooters in his vehicle.

At a later point in time, probably in 2006, members of the unit shot and killed a suspected opponent of the Gambian president near Banjul airport. As before, the accused transported the other accomplices to the scene.

The accused is expected to be brought before the investigating judge of the Federal High Court in the course of today (16 March 2021), who will present the arrest warrant to him and decide on the execution of pre-trial detention.”

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