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In fisheries officials’ case: prosecutors to charge 3 out of nine accused

Jun 3, 2015, 11:09 AM | Article By: Halimatou Ceesay

The Director of Public Prosecutions, S.H. Barkun, yesterday informed the court that in the new bill of indictment the prosecution are now going to charge three out of the nine fisheries officials indicted on an eleven-count charge ranging from negligence of official duty, economic crime and abuse of office, at the Banjul Magistrates’ Court.

DPP made this pronouncement before Justice Abi of the Banjul High Court.

When the case was called, the DPP informed the court that some of the accused persons were granted bail by the High Court, but they were not present in court.

At that juncture, Famara Darboe, one of the accused persons, walked into the courtroom and the DPP asked him to enter the dock, which he did.

The DPP then informed the court of the presence of one of the accused persons.

He said that in the new bill of indictment they were only charging three accused persons out of the nine accused for now, since “investigations are still ongoing” in the case.

Justice Abi then told the DPP that the new bill of indictment was not before him, and the DPP said they would take a date to withdraw the old case filed before the court and file in the new bill of indictment.

When Justice Abi asked the DPP how he intended to reach the accused persons, the DPP said that since the accused persons were granted bail by the court they should know “they are before the court”.

Justice Abi then asked Famara Darboe if he had any means of reaching all the accused persons, and he answered in the affirmative.

Justice Abi told him to help the court and tell all the accused persons to be in court on 11 June 2015 at 10 a.m. so the state could move on with the case.

The case was then adjourned to 11 June 2015, for mention.

The DPP asked Famara Darboe to inform the others to be in court on the next adjournment date so the rest that were not part of the new bill of indictment could be reinstated back in the ministry.

Readers would recall that the nine fisheries officials were earlier arraigned at the Banjul Magistrates’ Court.Among them those charged with economic crime went to the high court in Banjul to seek bail, which was granted them after they all denied the eleven-count charge preferred against them.