Judiciary of Sierra Leone Communications, Law Courts Building, Freetown, 3rd September 2021: Court of Appeal Judge, Honourable Justice Monfred Sesay, has sentenced Lamina Mansaray, an ex-military officer to 5 years for killing his wife.
The convict was before the court on one count indictment of manslaughter contrary to law.
The particulars of offence stated that the convict on the 14th day of December 2016, at Wilberforce Barracks in Freetown, unlawfully killed his wife, Mabinty Mansaray.
After spending 4 years and 9 months at the Male Pademba Road Correctional Center, convict Lamina Mansaray pleaded guilty to the offence of manslaughter.
While addressing the court on what transpired between himself and his wife, Mansaray told the court that he was a serving member of the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces at the time of the incident and he was residing at Wilberforce Barracks together with the deceased, his wife.
He said on the 13th December 2016, the deceased left the house for a week only to return home to request for money from him to take care of the house, which he refused.
He continued that while he took out money from his pocket to buy the requested items himself, an argument ensued between them which resulted in him beating her with his military belt.
The convict said she (Mabinty) became unconscious and was rushed to the 34 Military Hospital where she died the next day.
He said he was arrested by the Military Police and later handed over to the Sierra Leone Police for further investigations.
The convict pleaded for mercy, adding that the deceased was his wife with whom he had lived for the past 30 years.
The plea in mitigation was done by Lawyer Komba Kanu from Legal Aid Board.
In delivering his judgement, Hon. Justice Sesay said that having heard the passionate plea of the convict and the defence counsel, the convict will run a 5-year jail term including time spent.
He said the decision was in consideration of the welfare of the two children the convict has to fend for as the breadwinner and the fact that he didn’t waste the court’s time.
In another matter, Honourable Justice Monfred Sesay sentenced 26-year-old Mustapha Massaquoi to ten (10) years imprisonment for the offence of manslaughter.
The convict Mustapha Massaquoi was before the Court on a one count indictment of Manslaughter brought up against him by the State.
Upon his arraignment, he pleaded guilty to the offence as charged.
The particulars of offence stated that Massaquoi on the 22nd day of April 2018, at Dwarzark Community, in the Western Area of the Republic of Sierra Leone, unlawfully killed Lamin Kanu.
State Prosecutor Joseph A. K. Sesay had applied for the murder charge to be reduced to manslaughter, adding that the said application was made for speedy and fair trial and in the interest of justice.
The Prosecution cited Section 148 Sub section (1) of the Criminal Procedure Act of 1965 Act No 32 of 1965, which he said will cause no injustice to the accused.
The application was granted by Hon. Justice Sesay and the jurors discharged accordingly.
After the murder charge was replaced with manslaughter, Justice Sesay asked the Clerk to read the charge again to the accused person, who pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
The convict Massaquoi had told the court that the deceased was his friend.
He said that on 22nd April 2018, they were at the Dwarzark playing field when the deceased asked him to visit a Musical festival.
He explained that while they were at the festival, an argument degenerated into a fight between him and the deceased, and later he mistakenly stabbed the deceased which led to his death.
Delivering his judgement, Hon. Justice Sesay said he found him guilty of manslaughter.
In his allocutus, the convict referred to the deceased as his intimate friend, adding that his act did not intend to kill him, as it was the deceased who first broke a Stout bottle on his head.
In sentencing the convict, the Honourable Justice Sesay said that because the convict didn’t waste the court’s time and further made a remorseful plea mitigation, he will only sentence him to ten years imprisonment including the time already spent.
Justice Sesay used the occasion to warn against any form of violence against women and girls.
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