Feb 22, 2013, 9:53 AM
A.M.S. Jobarteh, former Attorney General and Minister of Justice, yesterday
appeared before Justice E.O.Dada at the High Court in Banjul.
Lamin Jobarteh is standing trial on three counts of economic crime and giving false information to a public servant.
The particulars of offence on count one disclosed that the accused, sometime between the month of July 2012 and May 2013 in Banjul, whilst he was the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, willfully and/or recklessly caused monetary loss to The Gambia Revenue Authority, a public body, by constituting a Task Force which reassessed and reviewed downwards the tax liabilities of several tax defaulters as found by the Tax Commission.
The particulars of offence on count two stated that the accused sometimes between the months of February and April 2013 in Banjul, whilst he was the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, informed the Office of the President that over D200 million had been recovered from tax defaulters and deposited in the GRA recovery account with the GTBank, knowing such information to be false.
The particulars of offence on count three also disclosed that the accused, sometimes between the months of July 2012 and May 2013 in Banjul, whilst he was the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, informed the Commissioner General, Gambia Revenue Authority, that there was cabinet approval to establish a Task Force to re-assess the tax liabilities of defaulters as shown in the Tax Commission report, knowing such information to be false.
In his testimony before the court yesterday, police officer Jawo Keita informed the court that the amount involved was D2,525, 056,591.57 (two billion, five hundred and twenty-five million, fifty-six thousand, five hundred and ninety-one dalasis fifty-seven butus).
The witness said he was called by the C.M.C and briefed about tax defaulters, adding that he was given a document dated 6 June 2012 (recommendation of the Tax Commission) minuted by the Inspector General of Police to the C.M.C.
Jawo Keita said he did not recover the said amount, but recovered some amount of money.
He said when it was announced over the air that the tax defaulters started paying their liabilities, he later asked the defaulters to be paying their liabilities into the GTBank.
The witness told the court that they were issued with receipts upon payment of their liabilities.
The said document (the Tax commission report) and a square book and receipts of payments by individuals and institutions were tendered by the DPP S.H. Barkum and admitted in evidence and marked as exhibits.
Hearing continues on 19 December 2016.