NIA chief security officer released

Thursday, June 07, 2018

James Mendy, the chief security officer at the State Intelligence Service was yesterday released by the High Court presided over by Justice Ebrima Jaiteh following a ruling anchored on a bail application filed by the applicant counsel.

It could be recalled that James Mendy was among nine suspects incarcerated on allegation of burying the late Solo Sandeng, the UDP activist believed to have died on the night of April 14, 2016.

The other suspects are: Quassy Mendy, Leon Gomez, Bakary Jammeh, Malafi Jarju, Ansumana mang, Yankuba Colley, Lamin Bojang, and Mamudou Badjie.

During yesterday’s sitting, the applicant’s counsel, S.K. Jobe intimated the court that the applicant was arrested on the 22nd March, 2018 and submitted that since the applicant’s arrest and detention the State had not filed any charge against him, noting that the bill of indictment filed does not contain James Mendy’s name.

He therefore prayed the court to release him.

State’s counsel, A. Bah conceded that the indictment filed does not contain the applicant’s name but urged the court to grant bail to the applicant on such terms.

In his ruling, Justice Ebrima Jaiteh, disclosed that it is clear from the bill of indictment that there is no allegation leveled against James Mendy by the State.

Justice Jaiteh pointed out that since there is no offence leveled against the applicant, there was no reason to grant bail to someone who is not charge with any offence.

Justice Jaiteh remarked that to further incarcerate him is tantamount to a gross violation of fundamental human right as enshrined in 1997 Constitution.

He referred to Order 6, Rule 2 of the High Court rules of first schedule and stated that in this case, James Mendy was not charged by the State for committing any offence against the laws of The Gambia.

He pointed out that for the interest of justice and pursuant to Order 6, Rule 2 of the rules of the High Court, 2nd schedule, ordered that James Mendy be released forthwith from prison and to resume work and be paid all his outstanding wage arrears.

Meanwhile, the hearing on the bail application for the other suspects was adjourned to the 12th of June, 2018.

Author: Bruce Asemota