Police Arraign Man in Court for Allegedly Killing British Lady

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By Louise Jobe 

Augustine Bangura, a national of Sierra Leone was on Monday, 26 February arraigned before Principal Magistrate A. Mendy of the Brikama Magistrate’s Court for allegedly killing one British lady, Shakina Chinadu.

Bangura was arraigned on a single charge of murder.  During the trial, Augustine Bangura took his plea. He pleaded not guilty to the charge. The witness said he did not hit the deceased on her head using a hammer. Assistant Superintendent of Police Buteh Sawaneh represented the Inspector General of Police.

Police prosecutor, ASP Buteh Sawaneh, asked the court to transfer the case to the high court as the magistrate court lacks the power to try offences that attract life imprisonment or death sentences. Murder attracts life imprisonment or death penalty under Gambian laws. The prosecuting officer made certain references to the provisions of the laws including Legal Notice Number 3 of 2009 by the Chief Justice pursuant to powers he has in the Constitution to give directives to the courts. The Legal Notice wipes out the power of the magistrates courts and all other lower courts to hear cases of murder. It provides that such cases should be transferred to the Special Criminal Division of the High Court. 

The prosecuting officer made reference to Section 208A of the Criminal Procedure Code to ask the court to remand the accused person pending his appearance before the high court.

Principal Magistrate A. Mendy granted all the requests as she ordered for the transfer of the case to the high court and for the remand of the accused person until he appears before the Special Criminal Division of the High Court.

According to the particulars of the offence, Augustine Bangura, on the 14 of February 2024 at Madina Alagie Gaye Village in West Coast Region with malice caused the death of one Shakina Chinedu by hitting her with a hammer on her head