Farhad Hoomer’s Nugget Road, Reservoir Hills, home, where men allegedly trained “military style” and a kidnapped victim was found.
Durban - WHEN Farhad Hoomer was arrested last month during a prayer meeting, his 12-year-old son was detained for eight hours by police.

Another 18-month-old girl was also present when police entered with “black masks on their faces and huge guns”.

This emerged in affidavits that the men accused of murder, arson, extortion and terror-related charges have submitted to the Verulam Magistrate’s Court.

Police have identified Hoomer as the ringleader of the group which allegedly set up shop in Reservoir Hills over a year ago.

His family is still struggling to overcome the aftermath of his arrest.

However, a family member who spoke briefly on the doorstep of Hoomer’s house in Overport declined to comment further.

It’s here that Hoomer will live with his eight children and two wives, should he be granted bail.

“I have very strong family ties and will never abandon my family in order to evade trial in this matter,” Hoomer said in his affidavit.

Hoomer said the group had been conducting their Friday prayers at a house on Fulham Road when they were arrested.

The house had been used by the group as a mosque, and his child had been with him, praying under the leadership of the fourth accused, Tabit Said Mwenda.

Mwenda’s wife and 18-month-old were also present at the time of their arrests.

In Mwenda’s affidavit, handed to the court, he said: “There were approximately 30 police officials there, some of whom were dressed like army officers.

“They had black masks on their faces and carried huge guns. We were all told to get down if we did not want to be hurt. All of us that were praying obliged.”

Hoomer said: “I was harshly treated by police and deprived of food and water following my arrest.”

While this was happening, a Tanzanian man was being rescued by police from Hoomer’s property on Nugget Road just over a kilometre away.

The man was allegedly being kept as a hostage.

But despite the man pointing out Hoomer during an identity parade, Hoomer is adamant that the State has a “flimsy” case against him.

His advocate, Jimmy Howse, said that the alleged hostage also singled out people who were innocent in the parade.

Howse said Hoomer was never identified during the identity parade in relation to the murder, arson and explosives incidents at the Imam Hussein Mosque, nor the Woolworths explosives incidents.

Through his businesses, the 42-year-old makes a turnover of R5million a month.

Hoomer said he was prepared to pay R100 000 for bail, the same as co-accused Goolam Haffajee, who was released on bail last month.

The group’s bail application is set to continue this week.

Sunday Tribune