Bag of Onions Lands Man in Court
Jan 21, 2009, 5:17 AM
Micheal Ifunaya, a Nigerian national and one of the suspects accused of killing a British national, Ian Stokes, at the Bakoteh Junction Bar, yesterday alleged in his testimony that he was tortured in obtaining statements from him.
Infunaya was testifying as defence witness one (DW1), in the voire dire trial involving him and another two accused persons, at the Special Criminal Court in
He told the court he used to live in Bakau Sanchaba, and had a commercial van for transportation, adding that he could also recall one Fansu Sowe, a police officer, who recorded his statement, but he never saw PW5, Adama Bojang, who claimed to be an independent witness.
“On 14 May 2012, I was arrested at Barra and taken to Kairaba Police Station, he stated, admitting that at Barra when he was arrested he was not beaten.
He said Fansu Sowe brought out all the inmates from the cell, except him alone, Micheal, and started asking him questions about the white man, adding that he told Sowe that he knew nothing about the white man.
He revealed that Sowe then started by putting off a cigarette on his leg, and showed to the court the alleged scars on his leg.
Infunaya further added that the officer also stamped on his shoulder, and at that point he had to lie on the floor.
He said he was later taken to Bakoteh Police Station, where he was asked whether he could read and write, and he responded in the affirmative.
“A piece of paper was given to me, but was later taken away from me. I was then tightly handcuffed, and they started beating me on my head and face with a flat hard object,” he told the court.
He said whenever he told them something they did not like, they would beat him with that object.
He said he was seriously beaten, at the time of recording his statement.
“My legs were shackled and my hands were cuffed from Bakoteh Police Station to Kairaba Police Station, and they were asking me about the white man,” he continued.
“I swear, PW5 was not present at the time a statement was recorded from me. The statement was not voluntary, as I was subjected to torture before it was obtained,” he told the court.
Under cross-examination, DW1 told the court that he had never admitted the murder charge preferred against him, and he had never admitted to the charge of conspiracy and kidnapping.
He denied making the comments on the statement.