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In Lungi murder trial:

Defence objects to tendering statement

March 6, 2015 By Hassan Gbassay Koroma

Defence counsel in the Lungi murder trial involving one Fatmata Tucker yesterday objected to the tendering of statement the prosecution says the accused made to the police because it was not obtained voluntarily.

Ishmael Philip Mammie submitted at the Freetown High Court presided over by Judge Alusine Sesay that the particulars of the involuntary statement include inducement, threat and coercion.

“My Lord, I am objecting to the tendering of the accused person’s second statement which she made to the police on the grounds that the statement was involuntary obtained. The person who obtained the statement from the accused is a man in authority and I have just received an instruction from my client that the signature on the statement is not hers,” Mammie submitted.

He argued that according to the rules of evidence, statement obtained from an accused person should be made voluntarily, quoting Archibald criminal practice guide 36th edition.

In his reply to the objection, state prosecutor Mohamed M. Sow stated that the sixth prosecution witness, Detective Sergeant 6493 Abdul Patrick Kanu, had testified that the statement was obtained from the accused person in compliance with the judge’s rule.

He said the witness has told the court that the accused was accorded her right to call a legal practitioner, and cited paragraph 1115 of Archibald saying, “According to the testimony of the witness the accused fully complied and she was not induced.”

Fatmata Tucker was charged with one count of murder contrary to law following the gruesome death of her boyfriend, Saidu Bangura, at the Suffizan Guest House in Lungi, Port Loko district, on 6 April, 2014.

Judge Sesay adjourned the matter to 12 March for a ruling on the defense objection.