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Case of ex-station officer and OC proceeds

Jul 13, 2012, 12:52 PM | Article By: Binta Fatty-Gitteh

The case involving Jerreh Jarju, ex-station officer of Sibanor Police Station, and Samba Camara, ex-commanding officer of the same station, on Wednesday proceeded at the Brikama Magistrates’ Court with the submission of no-case-to-answer by the defence counsel.

The former officers were being tried for the offences of official corruption, public officers receiving property to show favour, abuse of office, conspiracy to commit misdemeanor and destroying evidence.

In his no-case submission, defence counsel, Kebba Sanyang, submitted that the 1st accused was charged together with the 2nd accused on four counts and the 1st accused was alone charged on count five.

Counsel submitted that count one was related to the offence of official corruption, count two to public officers receiving property to show favour, count three to abuse of office, count four to conspiracy to commit misdemeanor and count five, for which the 1st accused was charged alone, to destroying evidence.

He submitted further that on count two and three, it was trite law that there could not be any prosecution in relation to this offence unless with the sanction of the Attorney General.

“That is in fact provided by the criminal code itself,” counsel told the court.

“In this case, there is no fiat from the Attorney General permitting the prosecution of the accused persons,” counsel added, stating that there should be a permit from the Attorney General to prosecute the accused persons.

“I therefore urge the court to strike out those two counts because they are bad in law,” counsel submitted.

Counsel further submitted that the prosecution called 6 witnesses to prove their case, adding that PW2, PW3, PW4 and PW5, all had a vested interest in the case and by that interest in the case, they were not credible witnesses.

He said PW2, Nabi Jarju, in his evidence-in-chief, told the court he was arrested with cannabis, stating that PW3, PW4 and PW5, were all relatives to PW2, Nabi Jarju.

Defence counsel further submitted that in the examination-in-chief of PW2, Nabi Jarju, he told the court the quantity of cannabis seized from him was 3kilos.

He adduced that while under cross-examination, he said he was arrested by the 1st accused person, adding that PW2 also agreed that he was escorted from Sibanor Police Station to Banjul NDEA for weightment.

Counsel further adduced that PW2 was asked whether the cannabis was weighed upon their arrival at the Banjul NDEA office with the 1st accused and he answered in the negative.

He said he was again asked why, and he said the cannabis did not belong to him.

“PW2, Nabi Jarju, was not prosecuted for the cannabis and that the witness who should have been prosecuted turned around to lie against the innocent police officers,” counsel submitted.

He said PW2 had created a strong imagination of his own by saying that he and his relatives gave money to the 1st accused to do him favour and release him from police custody.

He added that the strong false allegation was what was circulated to the NDEA headquarters in Banjul and he quickly got his relatives, who went and gave their statements to the police.

Defence counsel further submitted that PW3 and PW4 had one objective, which was to come and lie against the accused persons, so their brother, PW2 Nabi Jarju, could escape the long arm of justice.

Counsel urged the court to have a total disregard for the evidence of PW2, PW3, PW4 and PW5, because those evidence were so manifested unreliable.

He submitted that the ingredients of the remaining offences - count one, count four and count five - had not been sufficiently established, urging the court to acquit and discharge the accused persons.

Meanwhile, the prosecutor, Chief Inspector L. Touray, was expected to file his reply on 18 July 2012.

The case was then adjourned till 6 August 2012, for ruling.