Bloomberg News

Nigeria Court Jails Boko Haram Member Over Christmas Day Bombing

December 20, 2013

A Nigerian court sentenced a member of the Islamist group Boko Haram to life imprisonment for his role in bombings including a Christmas attack in 2011 that killed at least 43 people.

Kabiru Sokoto knew militants planned to bomb the St. Theresa Catholic Church outside the capital on Christmas Day and failed to tell the authorities, the judge in Abuja’s Federal High Court said today.

Boko Haram, which originated in Nigeria’s northeast, has killed thousands of people mainly in the north since 2009 in a campaign to impose Islamic law in Africa’s most populous country. It stormed a Nigerian air force base near the northern city of Maiduguri on Dec. 2.

New York-based Human Rights Watch said the group has used child soldiers in its raids. On Nov. 13, the U.S. named Boko Haram, which means “Western education is a sin,” as a terrorist organization.

Sokoto “showed no remorse throughout the trial,” Justice Adeniyi Adetokunbo-Ademola said, according to a transcript of court proceedings.

To contact the reporters on this story: Daniel Magnowski in Abuja at dmagnowski@bloomberg.net; Elisha Bala-Gbogbo in Abuja at ebalagbogbo@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Nasreen Seria at nseria@bloomberg.net


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