Defense Counsel says accused persons be discharged
February 11, 2020
By Regina Pratt
Defense Counsel, Melron Nicol-Wilson, has told the court that his clients: former Mayor Herbert George Williams and Abu Bakarr Daramy, have no hands in the alleged murder of journalist Ibrahim Samura, and that the court should acquit and discharge them.
Lawyer Nicol-Wilson made the statement before Magistrate Mark Ngegba presiding at court No.2, while making a no-case submission on behalf of his clients, who are preliminarily being investigated at the lower court for the death of Ibrahim Samura, former Managing Editor and publisher of the privately owned New Age Newspaper, on June 6, 2018.
According to media report, Samura was allegedly beaten by state authorities on March 31, 2018-the day for the run-off presidential election, which eventually led to his death.
Barely a year after his death, police charged former Mayor Herbert George Williams and Abu Bakarr Daramy, erstwhile Public Relations Officer in the Ministry of Agriculture.
The lawyer started off by reiterating to the court that his clients were charged for two counts of murder and conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm.
He submitted that all the prosecution witnesses didn’t say anything in their testimonies that support the allegations for which the two accused persons are standing trial for.
He told the court that Prosecution Witness No.1 (PW1), Dr. Owizz Koroma, did not in ‘anyway, manner or form’ stated that the accused persons are responsible for the death of the deceased.
He added that even the wife of the deceased, Mrs. Memunatu Samura, throughout her testimony did not mention anything about the 1st and 2nd accused persons.
“All that the wife mentioned was that the deceased was arrested by the Criminal Investigations Department for a vehicle they claimed was stolen,” he said.
He added that the ‘key witnes, Thomas Dixon, who was an eye witness to the incident didn’t offer any evidence that would implicate his clients.
He said Dixon had told the court that the 1st and 2nd accused persons had no altercation with the deceased on the day of the presidential run-off election, and that the deceased was allegedly assaulted by State House security personnel.
He stated that the prosecution failed to know who the State House security personnel were.
He said PW7, Abu Bakarr Tarawally, who interviewed the deceased told the court that the late journalist did not mention the accused persons among those that assaulted him.
The defense counsel said PW9, Mahmoud Tim Kargbo, said the 1st and 2nd accused persons were standing in a public place when the deceased was assaulted.
The lawyer argued that PW9 continued that he was present when the accused was about to take a snap shot of a Hilux vehicle, when he was grabbed by State House security in the process.
“My Lord, these two accused persons have no case to answer before this court. I canvass your lordship to acquit and discharge the accused persons,” he submitted.
He submitted to the court that the state has not been able to prove the elements of murder, adding that the 1st and 2nd accused have been exonerated by the state prosecution.
He noted that some of the witnesses said they knew the 1st and 2nd accused persons as civilians and not State House security personnel.
“If it is a matter of law, evidence adduced in this court both accused must be discharged from this preliminary investigation. The prosecution has failed woefully that the 1st and 2nd accused persons committed murder and conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm, he submitted.