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Bun's in-law charged with offering charms

May 21, 2010, 11:59 AM | Article By: Bakary Samateh

Yusupha Darboe, an in-law to Ibrahim Bun Sanneh, the ex-Executive Director of National Drugs Enforcement Agency (NDEA), was on Thursday 20th May 2010, arraigned at the Banjul Magistrates' Court, charged with offering criminal charms.

The accused person, Yusupha Darboe, pleaded not guilty before Principal Magistrate Emmanuel Nkea, and was granted court bail in the sum of D200, 000, with two Gambian sureties, one of whom must have a landed property within the Greater Banjul Area.

According to the particulars of offence, on 14th May 2010, at Mile 2 State Central Prison in the city of Banjul, the accused person, Yusupha Darboe, allegedly offered a criminal charm to Marie Sanneh (a step daughter of Bun Sanneh), who is currently on trial in order to protect her or delay the detection of her alleged crime.

Testifying as the first prosecution witness, Corporal Kadijatou Camara, a prison officer, told the court that on 14th May 2010, the accused came to Mile 2 State Central Prison to visit one Marie Sanneh, who was under detention in connection with drugs and related charges at the High Court.

She said the accused was booked at the main gate with his properties brought for Marie, and she was assigned to escort Marie to the visiting room.

She further revealed that during the course of the accused person's visit, he produced something like a "juju" with a piece of white clothe, covered with red colour from a plastic bag, which he handed over to Marie Sanneh, as he chats with her.

Further testifying, the prison officer told the court that it was then she asked Marie to hand over the juju to her, and later enquired from the accused about the juju, but the accused told her that the juju was meant to ease the pain in Marie.

The accused further told her that this was a medicine from her father, to protect her while in detention, Ms. Camara added.

She stated that she handed over the juju to her superior, one Alagie Jobe, after which Marie returned to her cell at the female wing. Subsequently, she said the accused was taken in for questioning. The Juju was tendered in court and marked as an exhibit.

During cross-examination, defence counsel Pap Cheyassin Secka asked the witness where visitors report to, when they come to Mile 2. In reply, the witness said "at the reception."

The defence counsel also asked the witness whether she knew the purpose of the juju. In response, the witness said she didn't know.

Defence counsel then put it to the witness that the purpose of the juju was to protect Marie Sanneh from pain, as she had a miscarriage during her detention. The witness replied that she did not know about that.

At this juncture, the hearing was adjourned to 22nd May 2010 for continuation.