Abu Dhabi: Six prosecution witnesses told a State Security Court on Tuesday of “further evidence” to confirm the relation between a clandestine group formed in the UAE and the international Muslim Brotherhood organisation.
The 94 Emiratis charged with forming an illegal organisation aimed at threatening national security and destablising the political system in the country appeared at the fourth session held by the State Security court in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday.
The court, part of the Federal Supreme Court, adjourned the hearing of the case until March 26. Presiding Judge, Falah Al Hajiri said the court will continue the hearing of the prosecution witnesses in the case No 79/2013 at its next session.
Key witness summoned
The judge said that more state security experts and witnesses would testify in court during next week’s session. The judge also ordered that a key witness, who is a security officer currently outside the UAE, be summoned to testify during the next scheduled hearing.
Monday’s session saw three prosecution witnesses describing the nature of the suspects’ operations and their motivations.
The judge also ordered that the medical report issued by Al Mafraq Hospital in the case of a female suspect, Fatima Al Za’abi, be referred to a specialised medical council to verify the suspect’s medical condition and if there was a need to release her passport and allow her to travel abroad for treatment. The hospital indicated that Fatima suffers serious heart problems and needs to travel to the US for treatment.
The judge ordered the presence of a high-ranking state security officer to give testimony as per the request of one of the defendants’ lawyers.
The prosecution informed the court that the officer who is required to appear in the court is currently abroad in connection with family commitments. The judge ordered the witness to present himself in court at the earliest.
On Tuesday, the court heard six technical experts all of whom testified about the information they had collected from personal computers and USB devices seized from the suspects. One witness said the data left no doubt that the suspects were trying to hide their illegal operations behind the projects and the activities they were conducting in public.
The court heard that the experts had carefully analysed the electronic evidence collected from the homes of the accused and their properties. The electronic devices subjected to the checks included personal computers, laptops, mobile phones and smart phones, and data storage devices.
The body of evidence also included personal accounts on websites, memberships on social media sites, email accounts, chat websites, and photo and video files, the witnesses added.
Witnesses confirmed that, after thorough examination of various pieces of evidence, it became overwhelmingly clear that the accused group did engage in activities that implicated them of running clandestine operations.
Witnesses said that the evidence points to the arranging of secret meetings, receipt of emails from banned parties and individuals who belonged to the banned Muslim Brotherhood and other organisations. The evidence also includes files and documents pertaining to financial statements, training and educational courses, and media gatherings associated with the international Muslim brotherhood operations.
All expert witnesses stated that they were assigned the task of examining the evidence collected from the accused in response to a formal request of the general prosecution office and national security agency.
The second and third expert witnesses stated that the analysis of the data showed information relevant to the Muslim Brotherhood.
The files also revealed financial transactions and statements of bank accounts supporting the banned organisation.
The witnesses also revealed evidence of secret meetings in PDF documents, videos and interviews conducted by the accused with international figures of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Attorney Al Kumaiti tried to point out some contradictions in some of the expert witnesses’ testimonies. He highlighted a specific claim related to one of the accused’s personal computer file which the witnesses said had been created on 25/2/2012, when in reality the exact time of its creation was 3/8/2011.
This contradiction was illogical, Al Kumaiti said.
Al Kumaiti also pointed out one of the pieces of evidence against one of his clients which consisted of an SMS that came from Kyrgyzstan congratulating him on Mursi’s election as Egypt’s President. He said that this did not constitute any wrongdoing on his client’s part.
Al Kumaiti also posed similar questions to all of the expert witnesses. The witnesses unanimously replied that all of their procedures were performed with due legal authorisation, in accordance with international operating procedures.