KKD to be tried by jury

BY: Nana Konadu Agyeman

State prosecutors in the case involving ace broadcaster, Kwasi Kyei Darkwah, popularly called KKD, yesterday asked the Accra Fast Track High Court to empanel a jury for the trial to begin.

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A State Attorney, Ms Malike Woanyo, told the court that the state would want to take a date for the hearing to start, “taking into consideration that it is a trial on indictment that needs to get in place a jury”.

Counsel’s reaction

However, the lead counsel for KKD, Mr Tony Forson Jr, did not take the request of the State Attorney kindly. 


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 “I think my learned colleague has not treated me friendly. As a matter of courtesy at the bar, if we cannot start the hearing today, she should have whispered it to me as we are ready for the trial to start,” he angrily told the court.

According to him, his client had been committed by the Kaneshie Magistrate Court to stand trial at the High Court since February 19, 2015.

“So prosecutors should not come and tell the court to fix a date for the hearing to begin,” Mr Forson told the court, adding, “I woke up as early as 1.20 a.m. today to prepare and observed that my blood pressure was high.”

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The court, presided over by Mr Justice Bright Mensah, however, advised Mr Forson not to be upset by the request of the State Attorney and adjourned the case to April 22, 2015.  

Adorned in a short-sleeve African wear and wearing a pair of sandals slippers, KKD appeared in court in the company of his 76-year-old father, Opanyin Kwasi Darkwah, and highlife celebrity, Okyeame Kwame Nsiah Apau.

Evidence

At the Kaneshie Magistrate Court on February 19, 2015, Ms Woanyo had told the court that the state had sufficient evidence to commit the accused to trial at the High Court and that the state prosecution had already served a bill of indictment on the accused person.

“After due examination of the summary of evidence, there is a prima facie to support the charges preferred against the accused person and it is based on this that the accused should stand trial,” she had told the court.

Defence witnesses

Mr Forson had strongly opposed the application of the state prosecutor and prayed the court to stay proceedings and refuse to commit his client to stand trial at the High Court.

He, however, informed the court that the defence team would call in some witnesses.

He mentioned a cousin of KKD’s, Kofi Okyere Darko (KOD), a former broadcaster with Radio Gold; Benny Blanco, a friend and presenter on TV3; Dr Emmanuel Srofenyo, a gynaecologist; a crime scene expert and the arresting officer whose names were not given.

Background

KKD has been charged with rape but he has denied the allegation on the grounds that the sexual encounter with the victim was ‘consensual’.

He was arrested at the African Regency Hotel on Saturday, December 27, 2014 following the alleged rape, which reportedly took place in a washroom of the hotel.

Withdrawal of case

On January 12, this year, the 19-year-old alleged rape victim expressed her disinterest in pursuing the case.

She consequently communicated her decision to the police and made copies of the letter available to the Director of Public Prosecutions, the registrar of the High Court and the Chief Justice.