The Prosecuting team on Tuesday 13th December 2022 led their third prosecution witness in the preliminary investigation into an alleged murder involving the Managing Director of Skye Bank, Sierra Leone, Ikubolaje Nicol.

The accused, Nicol, is alleged to have murdered his girlfriend, Sinnah Kargbo. Police charged him with three counts of conspiracy to murder, murder and perverting the course of justice.

Led in evidence by State Counsel, lawyer Aruna Jalloh, third prosecution witness, Detective Inspector of Police, Brima Kamara, who is attached at the Central Police Station in Freetown, recalled that on the 16th October 2022, between the hours of 11 and 12 midday, he was on duty at the Central Police Station, when Idrissa Kamara of No. 47 Lumley Road, Wilberforce in Freetown, together with the Operations Officer, Central Police Station, Superintendent John Momoh, brought in the accused person, adding that upon their arrival, Momoh made a report of the alleged murder of Sinnah Kargbo.

Kamara added that the report was recorded by him for the continuation of the investigation.

He added that the report was taken at 12:06 hours. Kamara also obtained a statement from Idrissa Kamara, who is a relative of the deceased. Kamara explained that after he obtained a statement from Idrissa Kamara, the accused person was detained in police cells.

He added that during the investigation, Idrissa Kamara told the police that the deceased had been taken to the Connaught Hospital Mortuary, adding that the police investigating team, and the relative of the deceased visited the morgue.

The witness added that upon arrival at the morgue, the team requested for the corpse to be identified, adding that the corpse was brought out lying on a stretcher. “Idrissa Kamara identified the corpse as the body of Sinnah Kargbo, while I instructed the SOCO Officer to take a snapshot of the

deceased,” he told the Court. The witness said he observed that the deceased wore a white T-shirt and black trousers, with a swollen face.

At Central Police Station, the witness and Sergeant 4823 obtained a voluntary caution statement from the accused person. Sergeant 9823 cautioned and questioned the accused person, adding that he terminated the interview at the instance of the accused person. The witness signed as the record while Sergeant 9823 witnessed it. The said statement was produced and tendered in court.

The witness continued that having terminated the statement, and based upon the evidence received, a search warrant was prepared, adding that a team of investigators which he headed, together with the deceased family proceeded to the premises of the accused person at No. 1 Nicol Drive in Freetown.

The witness disclosed that upon their arrival, the accused opened the doors and a search was conducted. “We were looking for female clothes, the mobile phone of the deceased,” he revealed. During the search, the witness disclosed that the team saw female clothes, female pants, bed sheets, pillowcases and one Samsung mobile phone. He noted that the items discovered have been submitted to the exhibit clerk for them to be tendered as exhibits. He disclosed that the search warrant was endorsed and signed by all parties.

He said that during the search, he directed the SOCO Officer to take snapshots. The search warrant was produced and tendered in court to form part of the court records. “On our way returning to Central Police Station, we got instructions that the case must be transferred to the Criminal investigations (CID) Headquarters for further investigation,” he revealed.

During cross-examination of the witness by defence counsel, lawyer Roland Wright, the witness reiterated that he first obtained the statement from the person that made the report. The witness stated that after he obtained a statement from Idrissa Kamara who made the report before he proceeded to the morgue. When he was asked about the timeline, the witness said he could not remember. The witness revealed that there was no lawyer present when the statement was being obtained from the accused person.

When defence counsel, lawyer Wright asked where he got the warrant when the date on it indicated that it was taken on a Sunday, the witness revealed that he did not find any Justice of the Peace on that day.

Lawyer Wright put it to the witness that he couldn’t have obtained a statement from the witness and interviewed on the same day, but the witness maintained that it is possible. Lawyer Wright put it to the witness that the search warrant was illegal since he cannot find any JP on a Sunday.

The witness also revealed that during the search, he did not find any implement at the accused premises. Lawyer Wright asked if the witness will be surprised to know that the

the corpse was at Columbia Davis a the time he said the corpse was at the morgue, but the witness maintained that the corpse was at the Connaught Hospital Mortuary. Lawyer Wright also put it to the witness that the accused was not taken to the Connaught Hospital Mortuary on the date in question which he made mentioned.

When the defence counsel asked about the photographs which he directed the SOCO Officer to take, Magistrate Marke Ngegha overruled him because that question was not germane to the trial. After all, the photographs are not before the Court. Defence Counsel also applied for the statement of the individual that made the report to the police and the photographs to be made available to the court

However, prosecuting counsel was curious to know the provisions of law which defence counsel relied on for the above application

Magistrate Marke Ngegba ruled that it is up to the prosecution to tender the photos. “With regards to the statements, the application will not be allowed because it will amount to hearsay,” Magistrate Ngegba remarked After cross-examination- Magistrate Ngegba adjourned the matter to the 20th of December 2022, whilst the accused remains