4 December 2012

Gambia: Court Dismisses State's Appeal Against Former Police Officer

Justice Abdullahi Mikailu of the Banjul High Court on Monday 3rd December, dismissed the appeal case filed by the State against the acquittal and discharge of Ebrima Sanneh, a former Sub-Inspector of The Gambia Police Force off the charge of giving false information to a public officer by the Banjul Magistrates' Court.

During the Monday sitting which lasted few minutes, Justice Mikaili decided to dismiss the State appeal by virtue of the fact that the respondent Ebrima Sanneh has not appeared before the Court for 3 consecutive sittings, thus prompting the Court to have no options, but to struck out the appeal because the respondent was not available.

The State is represented by Mr. Simon, whilst Mr. Sanneh has no representation. His previous lawyer during the trial at the Lower Court, Barrister Kebba Sanyang earlier on told the Court that he is not sure if he would continue to represent Sanneh in the appeal case as Sanneh did not communicate with him to do so. However, the State can still file another appeal whenever the respondent is available or could be traced.

It could be recalled that former Sub-Inspector Ebrima Sanneh, 41, a native of Niani Salikenni, joined The Gambia Police Force in 1993 up to October 2011, when he was sacked from the Force for "likely to become an inefficient Police officer". He was detained for 15 days in police custody and spent 2 nights at Mile II Prison before being charged with offence of giving false information to a public officer of which he was acquitted and discharged by Principal Magistrates Alagbe of the Banjul Magistrates' Court on a 'no case to answer' submission.

The State is unsatisfied with his acquittal and discharge and decided to file an appeal at the High Court seeking from the Court to set aside the ruling of the Lower Court in its entirety and to order Sanneh to enter his defence.

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