A Taxi Driver who is residing at Old Jeshwang had told Magistrate Blessed of the Kanifing Magistrates’ Court that the police officers at the Kanifing Police Station deceived him to thumbprint his cautionary and voluntary statements.
Ismaila Joof made the allegation during his defence testimony in a drug related case instituted against him before the court, saying he was never told the case would end up in court. He further stated that his two statements were recorded without the presence of an independent witness.
Joof added that he had never been involved in drug related case and was never told that the statements he thumb printed were going to be used against him in court.
He told the court that the narcotic officers found him watching a football game in one of his friends’ house, adding that on the arrival of the officers, his friend (owner of the house) was out and he alone was in the house at the time.
Joof further narrated that the officers introduced themselves to him and requested to conduct a search in the house, which he (accused) complied but told them that he is not the occupant of the house but came in to watch a football match.
“The officers conducted a search and found suspected cannabis in a bag. They asked me and I again told them that the house is not mine and the owner went out but they ended up arresting me,” He said.
The accused told the court that prior to his arrest; two other men including the landlord’s son were arrested. He added that the other two were released because the officers requested D2, 000 from each of them, which he said the other two paid and were released.
He further revealed, “The officers came to me with the same offer but I rejected it on the grounds that the cannabis was not mine as I only came to that house to watch a football game.” Joof emphasized that he is a driver and a responsible man with a family who has never been involved in drug case.
He told the court that after his arrest, he was taken to the Kanifing police station where his statements were recorded.
The case is adjourned to 29th November 2016 for judgment.
by Meita Touray