Malaysian plantation owner charged with providing training to militants

KUALA KANGSAR (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - A plantation owner named after the late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi was charged with providing military training to militants in Bukit Ara Para Kampung Ketior last year.

Muamar Gadaffi Mohamad Shafawi, 30, was charged in a magistrate's court here with training others between Dec 25 and Dec 27 last year.

The charge under Section 130F(c) of the Penal Code carries a maximum 30-year imprisonment and fine. No plea was recorded from him.

Muamar Gadaffi was arrested on June 13 in Sandakan along with his 29-year-old brother and a 31-year-old Royal Malaysian Navy officer.

Magistrate Nooroudura Mohamed Din fixed July 18 for mention pending transfer of the case to the Kuala Lumpur High Court.

Muamar Gadaffi, from Taiping, who obtained a diploma in computer engineering at a local polytechnic, had always been attracted to extremist teachings.

Instead of pursuing a career in computing, he opted to take charge of the plantation.

He is married and has two sons aged three and three months old.

Muamar Gadaffi was among three persons believed to have links with the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terror group.

In the Sessions Court later, rubber tapper Mohamad Amin Abdul Rahman, 29, pleaded guilty to five charges including illegal possession of two homemade shotguns and bullets between June 18 and June 25.

Another plantation worker, Abdul Rahman Ramli, 46, also pleaded guilty to three charges of having live bullets on June 25.

Sessions judge Johari Hassan set mention for both cases on July 25.

All three accused were detained as part of the Bukit Aman Special Branch Counter Terrorism Division's blitz against suspected local militants, which began on April 28.

In Kuala Lumpur, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said a naval officer had been freed.

"He was released as we did not have enough evidence to hold him. However, another navy personnel detained is still being investigated," he said.

Navy chief Admiral Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Jaafar said the officer had returned to the KD Sri Sandakan unit.

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