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Record of proceedings ready in cocaine appeal case

Feb 24, 2012, 1:25 PM | Article By: Bakary Samateh

The High Court was yesterday told that the record of proceedings in the lower court, in connection with the appeal case filed by the seven foreign nationals recently convicted for cocaine was ready.

The appellants, Rudy Rosoel, Hamid Gazi, Juan Carlos Sanchez, Estaban Zanvalla, George Sanchez Louis, Dose Fermin Eric Bottoni and Juan Carloss Diaz, filed an appeal against their conviction and sentence by the Banjul Magistrates’ Court to 50 years mandatory jail term with hard labour.

When the case was called yesterday, defence counsel Lamin Camara told the court that the initial typing of the records of proceedings at the lower court was ready.

The typed records will now have to go through different magistrates for vetting, as the case passed through different magistrates.

After that, it has to go through binding, and to make copies for the parties.

Counsel then applied to the court for an adjournment in order to finish that process.

The case was then adjourned till 18 March 2012. 

The grounds of the appellants appeal indicated that the petitioners were on 12 October 2011 convicted and sentenced to 50 years mandatory jail term with hard labour.

The grounds of appeal stated that the sentence and conviction was not supported by the evidence put before the court; that the trial magistrate erred in law when he stated that the prosecution had proved their case beyond all reasonable doubts.

The grounds further stated that the magistrate did not consider the totality of the evidence adduced before the court; and did not evaluate the evidence of the appellants in particular the 1, 2 and 4 appellants who testified in their defence.

It further noted that the magistrate erred in law, when he overruled the no-case-to-answer submission of the appellants.

The court also failed to avert its mind to the standard of legal requirement of proof beyond all reasonable doubts.

The court further failed to avert its mind to the fact that the witnesses were discredited during cross-examination, according to the grounds of appeal.