Ex-Reliance Financial staff fails to get his sentence reduced

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By Binta A Bah

A high court judge has upheld the decision of a lower court in the North Bank Region that convicted one Landing Sonko of stealing more than half-a-million dalasi from Reliance Financial Services.

Sonko has filed an appeal urging Justice Bakre to set aside the magistrates’ court judgement, arguing that the sentence exceeds what is provided for in the law and that the judgement is against the weight of evidence adduced during the trial.

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 However, the judge held that Sonko’s appeal lacked merit.

“The issues in an appeal must mandatorily emanate from the grounds of appeal and of the subsequent issues raised by the appellant have no bearing on the grounds of appeal set out in the notice of appeal,” the judge said before confirming the sentence of the magistrates’ court.

Sonko was convicted in 2020 on a charge of stealing. He was accused of stealing D550,000 while working for Reliance Financial Services Barra branch as a teller which came into his possession by virtue of his employment.

He pleaded not guilty but was found culpable by the Essau Magistrates’ Court at the end of the trial.

The court fined him D40,000 in default to serve three years in jail. He was also ordered to return the D550,000 he allegedly stole within two weeks.