Prosecution forgets cautionary statement again

By Kebba Jeffang

The trial of Sheikh Cham (the young man who alleges torture) suffered another setback when the prosecutor intimated to the court that Sheikh Chamhe had forgotten to fetch the cautionary statement of the accused.

This is the second time Prosecutor Jawla of the Drug Law Enforcement Agency (DLEA) has indicated that he has forgotten the said document obtained from the accused person at Wellingara station upon request by the defence counsel Lawyer Modou Drammeh for its production.

During yesterday’s proceedings 27th July, 2015 at Kanifing Magistrates’ Court before Magistrate Kijera, both parties were present including the accused person.

At this juncture, the prosecutor was seen attempting to call his next witness (PW2) but this was rejected by the magistrate.

He told the prosecution, “you should not confuse the court. The cross examination of PW1 did not end yet and the prosecution want to call in another witness.”

He advised them to recall PW1 and bring along the cautionary statement made by the accused person on the next adjourned date.

The prosecution however said they were busy at the July 22nd celebrations and that’s why they could not bring the statement.

At this juncture the presiding magistrate adjourned the matter till 11th August for continuation of cross examination.

Mr. Sheikh Cham has complained of being tortured by the narcotic officers when a search was conducted on him. He once told the court that the officers that came to arrest him refused to identify themselves and that was why he had not accepted their search on him. He is charged with obstruction which he denies.

Mr. Cham is an Auditor at Social Security and Housing Finance Corporation (SSHFC).

Veronic Carayol to Know Fate Today

By Mamadou Dem

The lower court in Banjul presided over by Magistrate Fatou Darboe is expected to deliver judgment today, Tuesday, 28 July, in the case of Veronic Carayol, former Deputy Commissioner of Enforcement at the Gambia Revenue Authority.

Ms. Carayol is standing trial on four count charges ranging from abuse of office, giving false information to a public servant, unlawful publication and corrupt practices, contrary to the laws of The Gambia. She denies the charges.

In trying to build a prima facie case, the prosecution called six witnesses and tendered host of exhibit against her.

At the closure of the prosecution’s case, Ms. Carayol’s attorney, Hawa Sisay Sabally, submitted a no-case submission which was later rejected by the court. The accused was therefore ordered to open her defence.

Ms. Carayol, in her defence testimony, vehemently disagreed with the investigation report (exhibit A) that she is very negative to deal with and was using the Government vehicle allocated to her (GRA63) to carry her sister’s employees.

“I was allocated with a double cabin vehicle with registration number GRA63 which was allocated to me by Ansumana Trawally, the then commissioner general of GRA, with a driver. I was not the only one allocated with a vehicle and no conditions were attached to the vehicle during and after the presentation and even the prosecution witness, William Jatta, has said it in his evidence before this court and I agreed with him that no conditions were attached to the vehicles during and after the presentation,” Carayol told the court.

She said she has never authorized the vehicle allocated to her to carry her sister’s employees. “I have my personal vehicle which I acquired in 2008 before a vehicle was allocated to me by my employer. I have been using my own vehicle from 2007-2008 before a vehicle was allocated to me,” she added.

Ms Carayol was arraigned on 23 September 2014 before the said court and granted bail in the sum of a million dalasi and was ordered to produce two Gambian sureties.