By Hawa Amara
One Alpha Barrie was last Thursday remanded at the maximum security prison at Pademba Road for allegedly forging a Namibia Passport, No. P0002044, after purporting it had been prepared and signed by Namibia Immigration.
The accused was arraigned on two counts of forgery and altering of forged document, contrary to section 2 of the Forgery Act, 1913.
According to the prosecution, the accused on 20th December, 2013, at the Freetown International Airport in Lungi, Kaffu Bullum chiefdom, Port Loko district, with intend to defraud, forged a Republic of Namibia ordinary Passport No. P0002044, which he purported to have been prepared by the Immigration Department, although he knew same to be false.
In his testimony, fifth prosecution witness, Abass Larkish, a profiler at Airline Profiling Service at the Lungi International Airport, told the court that he has the responsibility to check and verify passports and visas.
He said that the accused had shown up at his desk on the aforementioned date and handed his passport and ticket to him. He said the accused was travelling to England and was carrying a Namibia passport.
The witness told the court that passport turned out to as fake when examined by him, adding that all passports should have security features and that while some could be seen with the naked eyes, others are invisible and could only be seen by means of magnifier machines.
“I examined the accused passport, none of the invisible security features showed on the passport; the passport was the lowest grading of forgery. When I realised that the passport was forged I called the Assurance Manager, Olusholu Bankole, for further confirmation,” he said.
He said that the accused was later turned in to Immigration Officers at the airport, plus the forged passport as exhibit.
Defence counsel R.J. Kamara applied for bail, Magistrate Komba Kamanda refuse to grant one. The matter was prosecuted by Inspector Michael Kelly Dumbuya. The matters continue.