In the trial of Sheikh Tijan Sosseh,Judge, defence lament inordinate delay

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Mr Sosseh is being tried on charges of economic crime, abuse of office and theft; charges he strongly denied. He is being accused of economic malfeasance during his tenure as the programme coordinator.  

When the case was called yesterday before Justice Amadi of the Special Criminal Court, Lawyer  Antouman Gaye announced his appearance for the accused person together with  lawyers Lamin Camara  and Edward Singhatey, while no one stood up for the  state. 

Lawyer Gaye who is the leader of the defence team, subsequently referred the court to the records of the proceedings.  He argued that it has been about nine months since the prosecution has filed charges against his client and that the case has stalled, impressing upon the judge to consider the numerous setbacks. 

Justice Amadi, who also seemed to be dissatisfied with the slow pace of the case, intimated to the counsel that it was his first time of seeing the case and proposed for an adjournment to acquaint himself with the case. 

“Is the accused on bail?” he inquired shortly before making his decision. “You cannot hang bail on the accused’s head like that. He either goes to jail or you set him free,” he admonished.

Justice Amadi then urged his court clerk to write a hearing notice so as to file before the Attorney General in order to warn the prosecution to either proceed with the case or struck out the case. Hearing resumes April 2.

Author: Baba Sillah

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