Sierra Leone Police Arrests Senior Officer For Stealing 156 Foam Mattresses From Pademba Road Prison

After two appearances as a prisoner, Senior Prison Officer Abu Bakarr Nyaqui, Assistant Superintendent of Correction Services, was yesterday 7th June 2021 granted bail in the sum of two hundred million Leones or two sureties in like sum by the presiding Magistrate of the Pademba Road Magistrate Court No.1, Magistrate Sahr Kekura. The bail bond stated that both sureties should be an elderly citizen of Sierra Leone, employed in a recognized institution and show a proof of employment, an identification card indicating their addresses, and bail to be approved.

The accused is alleged to have stolen 156 foam mattresses, property of Sierra Leone Correctional Facility and charged on a count of Larceny by Servant contrary to Section 17(1)(A) of the Larceny Act 1916.

Defense Counsel Lawyer C. Campbell renewed his application for bail on behalf of his client, invoking Section 79(2) of the Criminal Procedure Act of 1965.

Lawyer Campbell vouched for safe conduct of his client, adding that granting bail to the accused will not in any way prejudice the case.

According to the indictment, the accused Abu Bakarr Nyanqui on Monday 19th April 2021, at the Male Correctional Facility at Pademba Road in Freetown did steal 156 foam mattresses, property of the Sierra Leone Correctional Facility.

Testifying in Court, Detective Solomon Amadu told the court that one Mustapha Jalloh, who happens to be a driver, was arrested in connection with foam mattresses which he allegedly transported to some place when and when questioned disclosed that the accused Nyanqui hired him to transport the foam mattresses for him.

He furthered that further enquires were made at the Correctional Facility in respect of the movement of the foam mattresses, adding that findings indicated that entries were made in the Prison’s diary by the accused. “The entries indicated that the accused removed 50 assorted foam mattresses which he conveyed to the reintegration center at New England Ville in Freetown, and on the 20th April 2021, he also removed 50 foam mattresses from the Pademba Road Facility to be conveyed to the reintegration center.

He furthered that the investigation continued to reintegration center in respect of the movement of mattresses from the facility to the reintegration center. He said the team of investigators requested for the release of certain military officers at the reintegration center who made statements of various dates.

The file was later sent to the Law Officers Department for legal advice, and was returned directing that the accused be charged with the offence of Larceny by Servant contrary to Section 17(1)(A) of the Larceny Act of 1916.

Responding to questions posed to him under cross examination by Defense Counsel whether the mattresses were taken out of Prison facility to Regent Road, the Witness Detective Solomon Amadu responded that there is a room in the correctional service that can contain more than that amount.

Magistrate Sahr Kekura however considered the bail application though the Prosecution Assistant Superintendent of Police I. Mansaray objected and adjourned the matter to 14th June 2021.

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