By Yankuba Jallow
The presiding Judge in the ongoing criminal trial involving former senior officers of the NIA, has made an order for Lawyers EE Chime and CE Mene, to appear in court at the next adjourned date.
The Court made this order when the two lawyers failed to give notice for their absence in court.
When the case was called before Hon. Justice Kumba Sillah-Camara of the Special Criminal Division of the Banjul High Court, Lawyers Antouman AB Gaye, Yassin Senghor, Combeh Gaye, Lamin S Camara and Rachel Y Mendy appeared for the State whilst Lawyer Ibrahim Jallow appeared for the 3rd accused person as well as held brief for Lawyer Patrick Gomez for the 2nd accused person; S. Kenedy for the 4th, 5th, 7th and 8th accused persons; U. Achigbue for the 6th accused person and held brief for D. Darboe, for the 9th accused person.
Senior State Counsel, Antouman AB Gaye pleaded to the court to charge the duo with contempt of court, for failing to appear and for failure to notify the court their reasons of absence. Yankuba Badjie, the first accused person, told the Court that he has made an appointment to meet his lawyers yesterday at 3pm. The Court told Yankuba that it made a ruling on this last week that he should try by all means to meet his lawyers and discuss with them, which he has failed to do.
The court did not adhere to his plea but made another order for the State through Legal Aid, to provide an Attorney for the first accused person, Yankuba Badjie.
The case was adjourned to November 27th 2017, for continuation of hearing and cross-examination of PW3.
The accused persons in the case are Yankuba Badjie, former Director of NIA, Louis Gomez, former Deputy Director NIA, Saikou Omar Jeng, former director of Operations NIA, Haruna Susso, Yusupha Jammeh, Tamba Masireh, Lamin Darboe and Baboucarr Sallah, all former operatives of the NIA and Lamin Lang Sanyang, a doctor. They face charges on 25 counts which include torture, murder, causing grievous harm, felony, fabrication of documents, forgery, making documents without authority, abducting in order to subject persons to grievous bodily harm, conspiracy to commit felony, etc. The accused persons pleaded not guilty to all the charges.