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General News | Jun 9, 2004

Soussoudis trial: Court orders Prosecution to produce missing receipt

GNA

Accra, June 9, GNA - An Accra Fast Track High trying Michael Soussoudis on Wednesday ordered the Prosecution to produce a missing renewal receipt covering the weapons impounded by the Police.

The order came after Defence had pointed out to the Court that one original renewed receipt out of the 43 renewed receipts was missing. Earlier, Chief Inspector Elizabeth Saim, a Fourth Prosecution Witness, who testified in the case, tendered a photocopy and original counterfoil renewed Police licences.

When the 43 photocopies of the renewed police receipts and the original copies were compared, the Defence team found out that one of the original receipts was missing.

Prosecuting, Mrs Naa Meley Wood, Chief State Attorney told the Court that she would consult the investigator.

The Court, therefore, adjourned the matter to June 23 to enable the Prosecution to produce receipt number, 510388/01, which was not among the original receipts.

Giving her evidence earlier, Chief Inspector Elizabeth Saim told the Court that she was the firearm-licensing clerk stationed at Cantonment Police Station.

Chief Inspector Saim, who had worked for 10 years, said she knew the accused person.

She said on February 16, 2001 she was at work when her District Commander introduced the accused to her that he (the accused) wanted to renew his licences.

She said she collected the old licenses and renewed them after which she returned them to Soussoudis, who was by then waiting. On February 19, the same year, the accused brought another permit to be renewed, adding she appended her signatures on all the renewed permits. When the Witness tendered the receipts, Defence objected to that, saying, his client should be in a better position to tender them. The Court, however, overruled Defence counsel's objection saying the Witness could tender those receipts because she appended her signature to them.

Soussoudis has been charged with two counts of possessing explosives, firearms and ammunition without lawful excuse.

He has pleaded not guilty before a seven-member jury of the Court presided over Mr Justice G. A. Aryeetey.

He is currently on bail.

The case for the Prosecution was that a team of security men acting upon a tip-off searched the premises of Soussoudis at Burma Camp sometime in April 2001.

During the search, a quantity of explosives, military kits and magazines were discovered at the main building and the boys' quarters (out house).

The Prosecution said the security men conducted a further search by using a detector for firearms and some more weapons were retrieved.

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