Thursday, February 18, 2010

2 Withdraw from lawyers' trial • But counsel says it's illegal

Thursday, February 18, 2010 (Page 3 Lead)

THE trial of the two lawyers who are alleged to have forged a High Court judgement to deprive a Tarkwa-based businessman, Mr Samuel Etroo, of his gold mining concession has taken another twist, with two shareholders indicating their disinterest in the case.
Messrs Anthony Osei Ameyaw and Michael Andoh wrote letters to the Attorney-General and other authorities withdrawing the case instituted by the complainant, Mr Etroo, against the two lawyers, Kwame Asamani and E. K. Amua-Sekyi.
But Mr Etroo has challenged the action of the two, claiming that they are not shareholders in his company and have, therefore, acted illegally.
The letters from the two gentlemen, dated February 4, 2010 and copied to the Chief Justice, the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), the Circuit Court judge hearing the case and the prosecutor in charge of the case, sought to withdraw the case against the two on the grounds that they (the authors) were majority shareholders of Mr Etroo’s company and for that reason they had the largest interest in the Esaase Gold Concession.
The two also stated that Mr Etroo compromised himself and for that reason they were withdrawing the case to pave way for dialogue with the current holder of the concession, Keegan Resources.
However, a letter dated February 8, 2010, written on behalf of Sametro Company Limited by Mr Joe Aboagye Debrah, a legal practitioner, and addressed to the Attorney-General and other authorities, said the two individuals were neither shareholders of the company nor complainants in the case.
According to counsel, Messrs Ameyaw and Andoh had “no legal capacity or whatsoever to direct or purport to direct a halt to the criminal proceedings currently pending in Circuit Court 7, Cocoa Affairs, Accra, before Mrs Justice Bartels-Kodwo”.
The letter further stated that the offences being tried were of such nature “that even our client cannot demand an end to the said criminal trial. With respect, only the Attorney-General, under law, has the power to file a nolle prosequi in the matter which, to all intents and purposes, will be unwarranted in the circumstances”.
The accused have pleaded not guilty and have been granted bail in the sum of GH¢80,000, with two sureties each to be justified.

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