By Neil Halligan
Defendants were found guilty of murder, attempted murder, detonating an explosive device
Fourteen Bahrainis, including three teenagers, have been sentenced to life imprisonment over their involvement in bomb blast that killed a policeman and injured two of his colleagues.
The 14 defendants were found guilty of murder, attempted murder, detonating an explosive device, possessing explosives, rioting and putting people’s lives in danger at the First High Criminal Court in Bahrain.
Only six were in court to answer the charges and will spend 25 years in jail, with the other eight - convicted in absentia - remaining at large.
The blast, which happened on July 6 last year near Wadiyan graveyard in Sitra, exploded after police went to the area to deal with around 400 rioters.
“The suspects have been sentenced to life for premeditated murder and attempted murder and for using an explosive device and other weapons like Molotov cocktails and metal rods,” the court verdict documents said, according to a report in Gulf Daily News.
“They were convicted based on evidence provided by the Public Prosecution, testimonies of witnesses, confessions of some of the suspects, the medical examiner's report on the deceased and the two injured, a report by forensic experts and evidence lifted from the scene including DNA samples.”
Court documents also said that the attack was planned, with each given specific roles that included blocking a road, attacking the policemen with Molotov cocktails, stones and metal rods, and luring them to a location near the cemetery where the bomb was hidden among debris.
Gulf Daily News said lawyers representing three teenagers pleaded for the court to show leniency because of their age, which was rejected because of the "harsh nature of the crime".
“None of them pleaded guilty to prosecutors or in court; one of them just admitted to taking part in a rally,” Manar Maki told the newspaper.
“The court documents had no proof of intention of murder and the Public Prosecution did not show concrete evidence of the crime.”
She said she will lodge an appeal against the teenagers' convictions.