By Lamin Sanyang
The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) SH Barkun and Lawyer Hawa Sisay Sabally yesterday, Thursday 3rd July, were engaged in legal tussle on the forfeiture of D1 Million bail bond against the sureties of Lawyer Ebrima Jah, who has jumped bail after his release from police custody.
Lawyer Ebrima Jah, a Gambian private legal practitioner was charged with official corruption before Justice Emmanuel Amadi of the Special Criminal Court at the Banjul High Court. The matter was set for mention to allow the accused, Lawyer Jah, to take his plea but the case could not proceed on three consecutive times because the accused did not show up in court.
The prosecution vowed to make the necessary application if the accused failed to appear. Therefore, the prosecutors filed an application to forfeit the bond against Abdoulie Jah and Ebrima Jobe, the two sureties of Lawyer Jah.
The Director of Public Prosecutions said from all indications, the accused has jumped bail and the respondents are in better position to know the whereabouts of the accused since they were the sureties.
“If they cannot produce the accused they should forfeit the bail bond which they have entered,” he told the court.
The defence lawyer, Hawa Sisay Sabally told the court that the respondents have each filed affidavit in opposition and jointly filed an additional affidavit. She stated that the indication in paragraph 4 (b) is not what happened according to the instructions she received from her clients, alleging that the bond was tampered with after her clients signed it. She said the sureties said they received a phone call from Lawyer Jah at the Major crime Unit that he needed two sureties for he was to appear before a general legal council at the office of the Chief Justice.
Lawyer Sisay Sabally said the bond was limited to only a day, adding that the accused was to appear on that very day on charges of official corruption. She referred to paragraphs 3-4 of the affidavit in opposition that the accused has complied with the terms of the bond and returned to the Major Crime Unit to give a statement.
Meanwhile, the case was adjourned till Monday, 8th July 2014 for continuation.