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Court dismisses plaintiff's visa case

Jul 21, 2010, 3:56 PM | Article By: Yusuf Ceesay

Principal Magistrate Drammeh of the Kanifing Magistrates' Court on 19th July 2010 dismissed a visa case instituted by one Peter Amendon against Bobby Orsosayen, the defendant.

The plaintiff claimed that he gave the defendant the sum of D74, 000 for the purchase of a Russian visa, D10, 000 damages for breach of contract and interest at the rate of 25% from October 2008 to the date of judgment and costs.

According to the plaintiff, the sum of D94, 000 was given to the defendant for the latter to acquire a Russian visa for the plaintiff. The plaintiff alleged that he paid this amount to the defendant, and in return got a fake Guinea-Bissau passport with a fake visa stamped therein.

The plaintiff, a Nigerian by nationality said he protested when the defendant first showed him the foreign passport in view of the fact that he will not be able to defend it, as he is a Nigerian and cannot speak Portuguese or Creole. The plaintiff stated that he only received D20, 000 from the amount given to the defendant.

In his defence, the defendant said he responded to the plaintiff's persistent begging for help to find someone who can get him a visa. As a result, he said, he came to his aid by introducing the plaintiff to one Akim who was renowned for his ability to produce Russian visa.

The defendant further stated that he informed the plaintiff that "it is a 50:50 chance of win or lose."

According to the defendant, the plaintiff made an advance payment of D10, 000, D5000 two weeks later and the balance three weeks thereon after the said Akim presented the plaintiff's passport with a Russian visa stamped on it. According to the defendant, the plaintiff inspected the passport and being satisfied with it, paid the balance.

Defendant further stated that the plaintiff could not travel with the visa because he bought a ticket with destination Dakar-Rome- Russia.

In her judgement, the trial magistrate told the court that she was of the view that, to afford the plaintiff redress in this case would be inimical to public policy and has the potential to do great violence to the very fabric of the administration of justice.

She further stated that the plaintiff knew or ought to know that the procedures to be followed in obtaining a valid visa starts with filling out the relevant visa application form, paying an application fee, going for an interview and then waiting for a specified period of time, as the merit of the application is being considered. She indicated that yet the plaintiff willingly gave a considerable amount of money to the defendant to provide him with a Russian visa.

"In light of the foregoing, and reprehensible as the alleged actions of the defendant are, I hold that the plaintiff is not entitled to any of the reliefs claimed. I make no award as to cost," she told the court.