Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Treason Trial: Defence to Address Court

Accused persons prefer to rely on prosecution’s evidence

Ex-CDS Langtombong Tamba and ex-Naval Chief Admiral Sarjo Fofana has told the Special Criminal Division of the High Court through their counsels that they prefer not to open their defence and instead would rely on evidence given by the prosecution.
On February 23, 2011, the accused persons, charged with treason and concealment of treason, were before presiding Judge, Emmanuel E. Ikpala. 
Counsel Sheriff Tambedou represents the 1st accused Langtombong Tamba. He informed the Court that his client will not open his defence; instead he will rely on evidence adduced by the Prosecution Witnesses and his own statement which has been tendered by the prosecution in this case. He said they are also urging the Court to give them time to verbally address the Court.
Submitting on behalf of the 2nd accused Sarjo Fofana; Counsel Lamin K. Mboge also noted that his client will take the same steps. 
When he took his turn, Prosecutor Denial O. Kulo did not object to the position of the defence, however, he agreed to an oral address of the Court during the next adjourned date.
The case was subsequently adjourned by Justice Ikpala till 14th March 2011 at 9:30am.
The prosecution called six witnesses among them Major Alieu Bah, Modou Manneh, Timothy Sanyang Modou Sowe, ex-Captain Bunja Darboe and Yaya Darboe all presently serving life sentence for their part in the 2006 coup attempt.
The court had earlier dismissed a “no case to answered” submission by the defence, maintaining that the prosecution had established a prima facie case against the accused.
Tamba and Fofana are charged with four counts of treason, including conspiracy to commit treason, concealment of treason, and treason. Offences related to March 21, 2006 abortive coup allegedly masterminded by ex-chief of defence staff (CDS) Colonel Ndure Cham. They have since denied the charges.  
Tamba is currently serving a death sentence along with six others for an attempted coup in 2009; he and co were convicted by High Court Judge Emmanuel A. Amadi on July 15, 2010. While Fofana, an ex-navy chief, was the President of a Court Martial that convicted and sentence 10 men to various jail terms (from ten years to life imprisonment) for their role in the 2006 foiled coup.  Source: The Voice

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