Sunday, October 10, 2010

JUJU TRIO GET 6 YEARS

Posted by Modou S. Joof on March 4, 2010 at 10:24pm
Banjul, The Gambia (TNBES) Justice Joseph Wowo of the High Court in Banjul Yesterday Wednesday February 3, 2010, convicted and sentenced Osseh Abdul Aziz Corr, Alasan Mbowe and Babucarr Njie to serve six years
imprisonment.

The High court judge convicted and sentence the accused persons to two years on Count two and four years on Count three with the exception Baboucarr Njie, who is to serve three years.

In his submission, DPP Richard Chenge argued that the Magistrate erred in law when he held that the Principal Prosecution witness who is an accomplice must be corroborated by other witnesses for the interest of
justice.

The DPP advanced that the Magistrate also erred in law when he discredited the unsworn evidences given by two NIA operatives, who promised to speak the truth without taking an oath. He added that the trial Magistrate
was perverse in evaluating the evidence of the of the prosecution witnesses and
also perversely refuse to evaluate crucial evidence of the prosecution and
further to submit that where a trial court is perverse in its evaluation of
evidence or refuse to evaluate evidence in issues, the High Court is entitled
to intervene for the interest of justice.

DPP Chenge observed that High Court can set aside the perverse findings of the magistrate and make findings where the magistrate perversely refused to make findings.

In his reply, lawyer P.C. O. Secka responded in affirmative to the submissions made by the DPP with regards to the intervention of the High Court whenever the need arises.

The defense counsel remarked that the trial magistrate had properly evaluated the evidence and had made correct findings of facts which should not be disturbed by the High Court.

Justice Joseph Wowo, delivering his judgement on the matter expressed his agreement with the DPP, that evidence of an accomplice if done with good intention does not require corroboration in law.

Justice Wowo observed that refusal of the three accused persons to reveal the ten gallant men and the financier of the project shows that they were making the juju for an evil purpose. The High Court judge then
asked as to whether the said juju is part of our culture, why were the accused
persons hiding from the NIA and also hiding the identity of the
beneficiaries.

The three accused persons were found guilty of conspiracy to acquire criminal charms and actually making criminal charms for reward.

In his plea for mitigation, the defence counsel, lawyer Secka urge the court to tamper justice with mercy and exercise lenient on his client, saying they are first time offenders and deserve mercy from the Court.

However, the DPP responded with reference to what he called the shameless way in which the accused persons had denied the obvious offence during the trial shows they are incorrigible liars.

He pointed out that their act constituted a security risk to the democracy of The Gambia and to the person of the president of the Republic by refusing to reveal the ten gallant men and the financier who may be roaming
in The Gambia and plotting to overthrow the government of The Gambia.

It would be recalled the three accused persons were discharged and acquitted by Banjul magistrates’ Court presided by the then Magistrate Edrissa Mbai now High Court judge.

The state appealed against the decision of the magistrate
court, urging the High court to find each of the accused persons guilty on the
three charges of conspiracy to commit felony and acquisition of charms.VOL:2 (daily observer)
ISSN:76

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