Friday, 29 March 2019

NCA Trial: Baffoe Bonnie ‘Confession’ Statement Rejected


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Story by Mckyntosh Essuman Aidoo


The Accra High Court Thursday 28th March 28, 2019 rejected three of the six statements by former Board Chairman of the National Communications Authority (NCA) Eugene Baffoe-Bonnie in which he allegedly confessed that he and the four other accused persons benefited financially from the purchase of the cyber security equipment.

The court presided over by Justice Eric Kyei Baffour, ruled that the three rejected statements by Mr Baffoe-Bonnie on May 19, 2017, were done without an independent witness as prescribed by Section 120 of NCRD 323.

The Investigator, Chief Michael Nkrumah, having recognized that the statements were taken without an independent witness, recalled the accused person to copy the same contents of the first statement onto another form, claiming, “the earlier statements were written on a wrong statement form”.

The court, however admitted three replicated statements from the earlier rejected statements given by Mr Baffoe-Bonnie on the basis that it didn’t matter whether the story was the same or not because a Lawyer and an independent witness were present at the time the statements were copied.

This decision by Justice Eric Kyei Baffuor was the conclusion of a mini trial to determine whether six caution statements that the prosecution wanted to tender as evidence were admissible.

Counsel for Eugene Baffoe-Bonnie Thaddeus Sory rejected the admissibility of the police caution and charge statements.

He further argued that Mr Baffoe-Bonnie gave those statements without the presence of a lawyer, while the police failed to advise him on his right to a lawyer of his choice.

The investigator in charge of the case, Detective Chief Inspector Michael Nkrumah, was in the dock and was about to tender the police caution statement and other statements of Baffoe-Bonnie in the earlier hearing when Lawyer Sory raised the objection which necessitated the mini trial.

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