Led in evidence by Assistant Superintendent of Police, ASP Osman Bangura the complainant who is the Manager Reliance Insurance Company testified that he recognized the accused person in the dock and vividly recalled the incident of Tuesday 5 June 2019.
On the said date, the witness said he discovered that the above stated quantum of money had gone missing from his bedroom; which he had kept in his drawer, adding that he later informed his wife, Gloria about the missing money.
According to the complainant, Osman Pious Conteh, he pretended as if he was going to work, but hid himself in the bathroom. He told the court that while he was in the bathroom, he heard the accused, Josephine Harding using a spare key to open the door to his bedroom,
Osman Pious George further testified that he pulled out his cell phone and started to video record the accused person, before he eventually emerged into his bedroom, where he met the accused, Josephine Harding searching his suitcase.
He also disclosed that when the accused saw him, she got scared as he walked towards her. He further stated that when he asked the accused person how she got the extra key to his bedroom, the accused person responded that the extra key was given to her by the complainant’s daughter, Christa Conteh.
The complainant further informed the court that he later informed his friend Sorie Conteh about the incident. He then returned to his parlor, grabbed the accused person and locked her in a secluded area of his premises, before he reported the matter at the New England Ville Police Division.
He further disclosed that he led a team of police officers to his premises where he found that the accused, Josephine Harding had escaped. He added that the police went to the premises of the accused person, but she could not be found.
He narrated that he was later contacted by the investigating police officers that he should report at the New England Ville Police Division, and that he should come along with all the monies he had in his drawer.
“I went along with four hundred and fifty thousand Leones, and while I was at the New England Ville Police Division, the investigating police officers informed me that when they conducted a search at the premises of the accused person, they discovered some money bands and wrappers, having identical signatures from the Union Trust Bank,” he stated.
According to the complainant, Osman Pious Conteh police later obtained additional statement from him at the New England Ville Police Division in Freetown, and also reported the matter at the Cyber Unit of the Criminal Investigation Department headquarter at Pademba Road in Freetown.
He intimated the court that the accused Josephine Harding was arrested in the eastern district head quarter town of Kenema, through the help of personnel at the CID Cyber Unit via her mobile phone, before she was brought down to Freetown.
Counsel representing the accused person, F B Conteh canvassed the presiding Magistrate to admit accused Josephine Harding on bail, as she has credible and reliable surety or sureties ready and willing to enter into recognizance on her behalf. However, the prosecuting police officer, Assistant Superintendent of Police, ASP Osman Bangura vehemently opposed to bail.
At this juncture, Magistrate Mohamed Serray Wurie ruled that since the accused person was arrested in Kenema, after allegedly committing the said offence, he would remand her at the Female Correctional Centre at Jomo Kenyatta Road until the next adjournment on 6 July 2018 when he would make a decision.