Sep 18, 2009, 5:42 AM
Senior Magistrate Lamin Mbai of the Banjul Magistrates’ Court yesterday struck out the seven-count charge preferred against the former Chief Justice of The Gambia, Justice Joseph Wowo.
Joseph Wowo was earlier arraigned before the said court and charged with seven counts, all relating to giving false information to a public officer, which he denied.
However, the state later filed a thirteen-count charge against him alongside former Attorney General and Minister of Justice Lamin A.M.S. Jobarteh, at the Special Criminal Court in Banjul, where their trial has already commenced.
The charges that were filed against him and Jobarteh at the High Court include abuse of office, conspiracy to defeat Justice and interference with witnesses, offences relating to Judicial proceeding, to giving false informing to a public officer, which both had denied.
When his case came up yesterday at the magistrates’ court, police prosecutor Sergeant Badjie told the court that the prosecution was applying for an adjournment, on the grounds that the case file has been requested for by the authorities for legal advise.
In response, defence counsel Uzuma told the court that the charges before the lower court were the same charges the accused person was facing at the high court in Banjul.
He said since on 19 August 2013, the accused person appeared on the same charges at the high court in Banjul.
He, therefore, applied for the case at the lower court to be struck out, which was granted.
In count one, Wowo was accused of writing a letter dated 3 December 2012 to the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), informing them that the Registrar of the High Court, Mrs. Mariama Ceesay informed him (Wowo) that Mrs. Amie Bensouda requested for records, which Mariama Ceesay refused and referred her to the Sheriff of the High Court Mr. Buba Jawo, information he knew to be false.
In count two, prosecutors accused Wowo of writing a letter to National Intelligence Agency on 3 December 2012, informing them that the staff of the high court registry informed him (Wowo) that Amie Bensouda said that they compile all cases and not land cases, information prosecutors said Wowo knew to be false or believed to be false.
Count three’s indictment stated that Joseph Wowo on 3 December 2012, wrote a letter dated 3 December 2012, to the National Intelligence Agency, informing them that Miss Anna Njie from Amie Bensouda’s Chamber lied to him (Wowo) when she told him that the information they wanted was only relating to land cases, information he knew to be or believed to be false.
In count four, Wowo was further accused that within the same time and place of writing to the NIA, informed them that the conduct of Amie Bensouda intended to undermine the administration of the Judiciary, information he knew to be false.
In count five, prosecutors accused Wowo of writing to the NIA within the same time and place, informing them that Mrs. Amie Bensouda conducted her activities in a clandestine manner, information he knew or believed to be false.
In count six, Wowo was accused of writing a letter, informing the NIA that after his letter of complaint to the NIA about the activities of Amie Bensouda, her Chamber later sent a letter requesting for a collection of data on the resolution of land disputes, information he knew or believed to be false.
Wowo was accused in count seven of informing the National Intelligence Agency that the letters from Amie Bensouda and Co was received by him (Wowo) on 6 December 2012, information he knew or believed to be false.