Manama: Bahrain’s Cassation Court, the country’s highest court, on Monday upheld the prison sentences against 13 defendants tried on charges of plotting against the state.
The 13 challenged the verdict pronounced by the High Court of Appeals on September 4.
The defendants were members of a group of 21 people put on trial in 2011 following the unrest that hit the country in February. However, seven were tried in absentia.
The defendants received terms ranging between two years and life in prison by the National Safety Court of First Instance on charges that included establishing and managing terror groups to change the state’s royal regime by force and to change the constitution and communicate intelligence with an overseas terrorist organisation to commit hostile acts against Bahrain.
The court sentenced Abdul Wahab Hussain Ali Ahmad, Hassan Ali Mushaima, Abdul Hadi Abdullah Al Khawaja, Abdul Jalil Abdullah Al Singace, Mohammad Habib Al Saffaf (Al Miqdad), Saeed Mirza Ahmad, Abdul Jalil Radhi Makki and the London-based Saeed Abdul Nabi Al Shehabi who was tried in absentia, to life in prison.
It also sentenced ten defendants to 15 years in prison while two other defendants were sentenced to serve five years in jail, and another defendant to two years in prison.
However, on April 30, the Cassation Court allowed one defendant, Al Horr Al Sameekh, to go home after his prison term was reduced from two years to six months.
The cases of the remaining 13 went through the High Court of Appeals and the Cassation Court.
Under Bahrain’s legal rules, the defendants who are tried in absentia do not have the right to appeal their sentences.