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City of Banjul
Sunday, October 1, 2023

Man convicted but walks away free


However Basiru Bah went home a free man because he had already spent more than a year in custody. “Considering the convict’s plea of mitigation, I sentence Basiru Bah to a fine of D50,000 or in default serve one year imprisonment. It will start from the day of the arrest to today. The convict being arrested on February 2013 is now more than one year in custody. He has therefore served the one year imprisonment. He is now free and can go home,” Magistrate Lamin Mbaye said.

The National Drug Enforcement Agency arrested Mr Bah in Soma, Lower River Region in 2013 and filed a single account of possession of prohibited drugs against him. He was accused of having in his possession 85 kilogrammes of Cannabis sativa, a prohibited drug. He maintained that he was innocent, even after he was pronounced guilty.

“I would say I believe the two witnesses’ testimonies against the accused. I believe the accused is trying to mislead the court and not telling the truth. I strongly believe he is only trying to save his skin. I have no doubt from the entire evidence that the prosecution have proven its case against the accused person and I find him guilty as charged,” Magistrate Mbaye said before passing his sentence.

After he was pronounced guilty, Mr Bah pleaded with the court to have mercy on him. “I want the court to help me because I’m very tired. I have a wife and two children. My mother and father have passed away and I am the only one taking care of my family. I beg the court to have mercy on me.”


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