By Libya Herald reporter.
Tunis, 9 January 2016:
Armed authorities are surrounding a house believed to be the site where the three Sabratha . . .[restrict]Shershary kidnapped children are being held.
A standoff has been ongoing all today with exchange of gunfire at a house believed to belong to the Nimri family in the Nimri estate of the Beach club area of Surman. The operation is a joint action by Sabratha and Surman authorities.
The action comes after one of the alleged organisers of the kidnapping of the three Sabratha Shershary children has revealed in a video confession some of the details of the crime.
The video confession was posted today on the Facebook page of the Counter Kidnapping and Extortion Crimes Committee of Saratha Municipality Council. The arrests came as part of a concerted effort by Sabratha and Surman to counter the numerous cases of kidnappings in the area.
Sabratha Municipality Council says that those arrested admitted to more than 25 cases of Kidnapping. They also admitted to holding up a petrol station, a car on the road and a factory for (breeze block) hollow bricks
The confessor, Abdelbasset Sassi-Daw, who claimed to have organized main parts of the kidnapping, said he was a law graduate from Surman. He said he organized and carried out the kidnapping with accomplices from Zawiya.
Although he was not, Sassi-Daw revealed that he had chosen accomplices from Zawiya who were all former convicts. He explained that his accomplices were all suspects and could only move about at night, wheras he was free to move about during the day.
He explained how he taught his accomplices their way around the streets and roads of Sabratha, and had suggested names of rich families in Sabratha. He pointed out to his accomplices where they lived too.
He explained that they chose the city of Sabratha in order to throw suspicion away from them and their cities of Surman and Zawyia onto IS, believed to be present in the city.
For the same reason, they only phoned the children’s family from Sabratha. He reported how he bought the children chocolates and Play Station discs. Sassi-Dow confirmed that they had asked the family for an LD 20 million ransom (about US$ 15 million at the official exchange rate).
The plan began to unravel as a result of Sabratha Council’s intense effort to recover the kidnapped children. When one of the kidnapping gang members was arrested by investigating authorities, the gang panicked and moved the children from Zawiya to Surman.
Sassi-Daw admitted that he was involved in transporting the children from Zawiya to Surman in a blacked out BMW where they were kept at the one of the Nimri’s house.
The Nimries are a well know militia or armed gang in the Surman / Sabratha area notorious for their numerous armed criminal activities.
Shershary family members had told Libya Herald weeks ago that they had always suspected that the Nemri gang was involved in the kidnapping of their children, but had refrained from going public in fear for the children’s safety.
The armed holdup by the authorities at the Nimri home today seems to confirm their earlier suspicions. [/restrict]