A mole in Kenya’s security services is helping British jihadi the White Widow dodge justice, experts fear.
Samantha Lewthwaite – the widow of 7/7 bomber Germaine Lindsay – orchestrated the 2013 Westgate Mall attack in capital Nairobi, which killed 71 people, including five Brits.
Kenyan police believe the 30-year-old entered the country in 2011 on a fake passport and joined terror network al-Shabaab in Mombasa.
Pals of Lewthwaite are now believed to have infiltrated a surveillance unit.
And insiders say “corruption” may have played a part in the world’s most wanted woman evading capture and crossing the border to Somalia, where she is now thought to be hiding.
George Musamali, a security expert who liaises with intelligence forces in Kenya, said: “The White Widow has been elusive and the only concern for us is she is privy to intelligence from our end and we are asking ourselves if we have been compromised.
“Have we been infiltrated by an element of the al-Shabaab operation? We are planning operations and this lady is able to slip out the country.
“The White Widow was actually arrested [after the Westgate attack] but produced forged documents.
“She was let loose and corruption played a major hand in that. This is why we have the FBI, CIA and MI6 actively involved in the hunt for Samantha.”
There is always a problem with insider leaks.”
He added of the problems in Africa: “Islamic State have migrated to sub-Saharan Africa.
“The world needs to get its head around the fact that IS has not gone away, it’s moved to Africa and that’s a big continent to hide in.”
Lewthwaite – from Aylesbury, Bucks, and the daughter of a former British Army soldier – converted to Islam at 17.
She was radicalised after meeting Lindsay, 19, and they wed in 2002.
Lindsay was one of four suicide bombers who detonated devices on three Tube trains and a bus in London on July 7, 2005, killing 56.
Lewthwaite said afterwards: “I totally condemn and am horrified by the atrocities.” But she was lying and used a fake identity to travel to East Africa.
Lewthwaite was named as a suspect in a 2012 grenade attack against tourists watching the Euros at the Jericho bar in Kenya’s port city of Mombasa.
Three people died and 25 were injured. The following year, Interpol issued a Red Notice arrest warrant for her after she was linked to the Westgate Mall massacre.
And she has been linked to last year’s Riverside terror attack in Nairobi, plus the slaughter of 148 by al-Shabaab gunmen at a Kenyan university in 2015.
Lewthwaite’s location remains unknown.
The former head of Somalia’s National Intelligence and Security Agency said she was tracked to the city of Jilib but it was too dangerous to arrest her.