Friday, April 16, 2021

In The NIA 9 TRIAL: Court refuses cross-examination on death certificate

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Justice Kumba Sillah-Camara, the trial judge of the criminal case involving former intelligence chiefs of the defunct NIA, has denied their Counsels the chance to ask questions on the death certificate of Louis Gomez, a former deputy director of the former intelligence outfit and an accused person in the said trial, who died while under custody.

The death certificate was tendered and admitted as evidence by the prosecution, through their witness Detective Sergeant Alhagie K. Manneh. Manneh told the Court that he obtained the document from Senior Principal Officer (SPO) Fanta Sanneh; that the document is an original one.

Lawyer Christopher E. Mene, the attorney for Yankuba Badjie, former director of NIA, pleaded to the Court to grant him chance to raise questions concerning the death certificate.

“I do not see it necessary to ask questions to the witness for the purpose of cross-examination,” Justice Sillah told Lawyer Mene.

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Lawyer Mene further pleaded to the Court to put it in record that he was denied to ask the witness questions before the said Court. His plea was granted and it was recorded by the Court.

Lawyer Antouman AB Gaye, the lead prosecutor for the State made an application that the indictment in so far as it concerns accused person No. 2 who is now deceased, has no effect on him and his file to be closed.

There was no objection from the defence. The Court proceeded to deliver its ruling that the indictment as it concerns Louis Gomez, has no legal effect and that the case against him has been closed.

The matter will come today in a trial within trial at 1 pm, at the same Court premises.

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