May 14, 2009, 6:22 AM
The case continued with the cross-examination of one Lamin Jammeh, a forestry officer, by defence counsel J.B. Sambou.
Under cross-examination, PW1 Lamin Jammeh told the court that the exhibit tendered by the prosecutor before the court was made at the NIA.
At that juncture, the counsel showed him the exhibit and asked him to tell the court whether the said exhibit was signed by an independent witness.
However, the police prosecutor, Sgt 2994 Lamin Jammeh, objected to the question, arguing that the exhibit that was tendered by him before the court was the witness’ statement.
In his ruling, the presiding magistrate told the court that the exhibit tendered by the prosecutor was a witness’ statement, which had nothing to do with an independent witness.
He, therefore, upheld the prosecutor’s objection.
The witness further told the court that he was detained at the NIA together with the two accused persons for 5 days.
He said that it was the responsibility of his department to arrest anyone who was found in the forest for illegal cutting down of trees.
He said according to the Forestry Act, after the arrest, they should be taken to the district tribunal, because they are the ones dealing with such matters.
He said after the incident, he was on his way to take such a step but he was not given the chance, adding that he was arrested the following day and taken to the NIA.
He was not told why he was arrested, he said.