Amadou Bidwell, alias Boy Bansang, has gained temporary liberty after spending more than two weeks in custody at the Central Prison in Banjul.
Boy Bansang was last Friday granted bail by the High Court in Banjul when his solicitor took the matter thither, following the refusal of the plea for same at the Kanifing.
Early last week, Mr. Bidwell’s counsel, lawyer Badou S.M. Conteh, contested the continued detention of his client at the Kanifing court, saying that Mr. Bidwell was constitutionally guaranteed bail under the circumstances. He pointed out that the offence with which his client was charged was bailable and should be consequently given bail to gain his liberty as the case progresses.
But lawyer Conteh’s eloquent arguments were not enough to convince magistrate Pa Harry Jammeh, who pointed out that granting Boy Bansang bail would be out of place since he was placed under custody with other suspected confederates-in-crime.
Dissatisfied with this, lawyer Conteh took the matter before Justice Sanji S. Monageng of the High Court in Banjul, expecting his client to be given his constitutionally guaranteed rights. He succeeded when Justice Monageng ruled last Friday that the offence for which Boy Bansang was charged was not enough to deny him bail and that he should be given bail.
He was therefore given bail in the sum of D10,000, as well as two sureties who had to be acceptable to the court registrar in the like sum. He was also obliged to answer any case if at all there is anything to.
It would be recalled that Boy Bansang’s arrest and subsequent court appearance followed hot on the heels of the arrest of 18 Guineans in an early morning paramilitary swoop on his compound in Serekunda. Some of the men who were arraigned before the Kanifing Magistrates’ Court the very day, accused Boy Bansang of dealing in hard drugs. He was therefore charged with aiding and abetting in contravention of section 23 of the Criminal Procedure Code, Cap 10, Vol. III of the laws of the land.
In another news, the 18 Guineans who were arrested in Boy Bansang’s compound and subsequently charged with engaging in activities ‘injurious’ to the country’s economy, were also given bail. They are expected back in court on 8th May 2007 for the opening of their trial.