Benbrika and 11 Others

 

Name

Abdul Nacer Benbrika, Amer Haddara, Aimen Joud, Shane Kent, Abdullah Merhi, Ahmed Raad, Ezzit Raad, Fadal Sayadi, Hany Taha, Shoue Hammoud, Majed Raad and Bassam Raad

Date Charged

November 2005.

Terrorism Charges

(1) All 12 men charged with intentionally being a member of a terrorist organisation (s 102.3 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth))

 

(2) Four men (Joud, Ahmed Raad, Sayadi and Merhi) charged with intentionally providing resources to a terrorist organisation (s 102.7(1))

 

(3) Six men (Joud, Ahmed Raad, Ezzit Raad, Bassam Raad, Taha and Shoue Hammoud) charged with attempting (s 11.1) intentionally to make funds available to a terrorist organisation

 

(4) Benbrika charged with intentionally directing the activities of a terrorist organisation (s 102.2(1))

 

(5) Benbrika, Haddara and Joud (two counts) charged with possessing a compact disk connected with preparation for a terrorist act (s 101.4(1))

Bail

Numerous applications for bail by the accused

 

See, for example:

 

Raad v DPP [2007] VSC 330 (6 September 2007)

 

Haddara v DPP [2006] VSC 8 (20 January 2006)

 

Hammoud v DPP [2006] VSC 516 (15 December 2006)

Date Trial Commenced

February 2008

Date Deliberations Commenced

20 August 2008 to 15 September 2008

Date Verdicts Handed Down

15 September (except Haddara and Kent - verdicts handed down on 16 September)

Verdicts

Benbrika, Joud, Sayadi, Merhi, Ahmed Raad, Ezzit Raad and Haddara guilty of (1) above

 

Taha, Hammoud, Majed Raad and Bassam Raad acquitted of (1) above

 

Jury unable to reach a verdict in relation to Kent on (1) above

 

Joud, Ahmed Raad and Sayadi guilty of (2) above

 

Merhi acquitted of (2) above

 

Joud, Ahmed Raad and Ezzit Raad guilty of (3) above

 

Bassam Raad, Taha and Shoue Hammoud acquitted of (3) above

 

Benbrika guilty of (4) above

 

Benbrika and Joud (two counts) guilty of (5) above

 

Haddara acquitted of (5) above

Sentences

Benbrika: Seven years for (1) above, 15 years for (4) above, five years for (5) above (to be served cumulatively with a non-parole period of 12 years)

 

Joud: Six and a half years for (1) above, eight years for (2) above, eight years for (3) above, five years for count 1 of (5) above and five years for count 2 of (5) above (to be served cumulatively, except for part of sentence for (3) above, with a non-parole period of seven and a half years)

 

Ahmed Raad: Six and a half years for (1) above, eight years for (2) above, eight years for (3) above (to be served cumulatively, except for part of sentence for (3) above, with a non-parole period of seven and a half years)

 

Sayadi: Six and a half years for (1) above and eight years for (2) above (to be served cumulatively with a non-parole period of six years)

 

Ezzit Raad: Six years for (1) above, six years for (3) above (to be served cumulatively, except for part of sentence for (3) above, with a non-parole period of five years and nine months)

 

Merhi: Six years for (1) above (with a non-parole period of four and a half years)

 

Haddara: Six years for (1) above (with a non-parole period of four and a half years)

Significant Pre-trial and Trial Motions

Successful challenge to the conditions of detention in which the men were held as violating their right to a fair trial

 

R v Benbrika (Ruling No 20) [2008] VSC 80 (20 March 2008)

 

Successful challenge to number of police officers in the courtroom and Perspex screen dividing accused from the Court as violating the presumption of innocence

 

R v Benbrika (Ruling No 12) [2007] VSC 524 (12 December 2007)

 

Numerous motions, including evidentiary issues and applications to discharge the jury

 

R v Benbrika (Ruling Nos 35.01-35.11) [2009] VSC 142 (8 April 2009)

Appeals

An appeal against conviction was not successful

An appeal against sentence was successful

The sentences were revised as follows:

Benbrika: Five years for (1) (no change to the total sentence or non parole period)

Joud: Four years and six months for (1) above, and five years for (3) above (total sentence reduced to eight years imprisonment and non-parole period to six months to six years

Sayadi: Four years and six months for (1) above, and seven years for (2) above (total sentence reduced to seven years and non-parole period to five years and three months)

Merhi: Four years for (1) above (total sentence reduced to four years and non-parole period to three years)

Ahmed Raad: Four years and six months for (1) above, and five years for (3) above (total sentence reduced to eight years and non-parole period to six months and six years)

Ezzit Raad: Four years for (1) above, and four years for (3) above (total sentence reduced to six years and non-parole period to four years and six months)

Haddara: Four years for (1) above (total sentence reduced to four years and non-parole period to three years)