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Marie Sanneh opens defence in Bun and Co Trial

Feb 10, 2012, 12:08 PM | Article By: Malamin Conteh

Marie Sanneh, the 4th accused person, in the case involving Bun Sanneh and other former officials of the National Drug Enforcement Agency, NDEA, yesterday opened her defence at the Special Criminal Court in Banjul.

She told the court that when the meeting was conducted with the senior management team of the NDEA concerning the plea bargain of one Babucarr Jatta, an amount of money was discussed and it was approved by the senior management.

She told the court that one Kalipha Jatta, told the board that he could not afford the approved amount, adding that the board then asked Kalipha Jatta how much he could pay and he stated the amount he could pay.

Marie Sanneh further testified that after the completion of the payment, the money would be given to her for her to deliver it to the court, adducing that when Kalipha gave her the D100,000 she paid it to the 5th accused, Seedy Bojang, the NDEA accountant, and she was given a receipt.

She added that after two months, Kalipha gave her an amount of D40,000 which she again paid to the 5th accused, Seedy Bojang, the accountant at the NDEA, and a receipt was again given to her.

 She identified both the receipts for the D100,000 and D40,000 when shown to her by the defence counsel.

Still testifying, Ms Sanneh told the court that after her payment, she went to the NDEA to see the 1st accused person, Ibrahim Bun Sanneh, who is a father and cousin to her, but that her visit had nothing to do with the case.

 She further stated that while in the office of the 1st accused, Bun Sanneh, he instructed her to call the 5th accused person, Seedy Bojang, and that Bun Sanneh asked Bojang about D70,000 but Bojang said there was no money and that the D70,000 was not with him.

She said she remembered making a cautionary statement at the NIA, saying she retrieved D70,000 from the accountant for securing a loan, adding that at the time of giving the statement in question she was beaten by Lamin Darboe and Omar Cham, both NIA officers.

Marie Sanneh said she told the NIA officers that she paid the D140,000 to the accountant, adding that she was tortured prior to making the statement.

 “I was told to deliver in the prison; this was when I told them that I am pregnant. When I was whisked out of the cell, I could hear the 1st accused wailing,” she added.

She said the 1st accused later stated that she (Marie Sanneh) took the D70,000, adding that after a while she was called for a confrontation with Bun Sanneh.

She said the NIA officers present at the confrontation told her that she should admit taking the money.

She added that as a result of the torture on her, she had a miscarriage.

Hearing continues on 15 February 2012.