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Tariq Mohammed on terror plot claim: Just ludicrous

Friday, February 16, 2018
Soldiers and police outside the home of one of the suspects arrested in connection with a plot to disrupt Carnival at Mustapha Lane, El Socorro, last week. Inset: Shamoon Mohammed, father of one of the suspects who was released on Wednesday.

“I thanked God and everyone who helped me get through the last six days.”

That’s exactly what Tariq Mohammed did on Wednesday night when he was released from detention for questioning in the ongoing police probe of the plot to disrupt Carnival 2018.

Mohammed and Fawaz Ali, both of El Socorro, San Juan, were released on Wednesday night after six days of detention. Two other detainees were released during the course of yesterday evening.

Mohammed’s mother and brother went to the Belmont Police Station - where he was detained - to collect him. He emerged around 11 pm and reached their El Socorro home around 11.30 pm, his father Shamoon said. Clad in a three quarter pants and a jersey, Tariq looked “tired and badly in need of sleep,” his father added.

Tariq Mohammed’s first words on entering his home and playing with his three children were, “Thank God, I’m back home.” Mohammed himself yesterday told the T&T Guardian he was flabbergasted and bewildered by the entire episode.

“I went with the police when they came last week, fully intent on co-operating - next minute I was hearing about ‘threat attack.’ Just ludicrous!” he said.

He said he was treated well in detention and police’s main approach while questioning him were along the lines of ‘’So what’s this plot ting, boy?” and asking him why he was in there.

“But I don’t know anything about what they were talking. As time wore on I realised I wouldn’t get out until Ash Wednesday and just had to be patient. I don’t want to go through this type of thing again. God knows best,” Tariq said.

“One thing for sure I’ve learned from this is that T&T isn’t a draconian military state and I don’t want to see it reach there - home is a great place.”

His father added, “Tariq is still trying to figure out why authorities came to him. They should go back to whoever - local or foreign - informed them of some plot and ask them what it was about. He knows nothing of any plot.”

And Mohammed’s family fully intends pursuing legal action concerning the situation and the tarnishing of the family’s name, Shamoon said.

“We’re now studying, with lawyers, what legal action we have to take on this. We’ll look at apologies and if we should be compensated for all the doors and locks police broke down entering the family home recently.

“There’s also the tarnishing of our family’s name - we’ve never had to deal with anything like this and we’re not going to let it go just like that. The assault on my second son Wasim also is going to the Police Complaints Authority.” Wasim Mohammed’s nose was bloodied when he was hit during the police searches, the family had said.


Ali was released on the basis of a habeas corpus writ filed by his attorneys seeking explanation on why he continued to be detained after 48-72 hours had passed. Ali’s relatives said yesterday he was taking some time to sort himself out after the “shock”.

“But he’s as normal as ever, the children were so happy to see him; he’s very glad to be home,” they told the T&T Guardian.

While Mohammed’s family had intended to file a similar writ of habeas corpus it wasn’t done, Shamoon Mohammed confirmed.

He added, “Around 8 pm Wednesday, police called us saying that at Tariq’s request, legal representation was wanted since they wanted to do their final interview with him.

“We got the legal representative to them by 8.45 pm. In a short space of time questioning was completed. At the end, they decided to release Tariq immediately. The superintendent in charge called and asked us to come and collect him.”

The attorneys for another El Socorro resident, Mustapha Khan, who was also detained last Thursday, were also in legal proceedings yesterday seeking his client’s release, relatives indicated.

Police revealed the plot threat last Thursday following searches at various El Socorro homes. In subsequent days they went on to search other locations along the East West corridor, Central and South, including homes, mosques and Muslim schools. Thirteen people in all, including a woman and two imams, were detained. After yesterday’s releases nine are still detained.


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