Source: GNA - Justice Kofi Essel Mensah, one of the judges fingered in the Anas Judicial Scandal said he was approached to give legal advice on a ‘legal problem’.

In a petition to the Chief Justice, Mr Justice Mensah denied ever touching, accepting or receiving GHC5,000 bribe in order to free a murder suspect, Mohammed Nii Baah who was on remand.
The petition written by Mr Gary Nimako Marfo, acting as a solicitor for Mr Justice Mensah who presides over the Human Rights Court, complained that the said Tigereyepi audio visuals had been ‘edited.’

In the petition, Mr Marfo is calling for a copy of the tape from the Chief Justice so he could respond appropriately to the letter written to Mr Justice Mensah on September 9, this year by the CJ.

Mr Marfo is also praying the CJ for extension of time to enable him to conduct a search on the status of the case in which his client was alleged to have received money to acquit Baah, the murder suspect.

According to Mr Marfo, Mr Justice Mensah said he was approached by Mr Gabriel Achana, a staff of the judicial service, who normally came to greet him every morning whenever he (Achana) reported to work.

Counsel said Mr Justice Mensah said in January this year, Mr Achana told him in front of the Human Rights Court that he has some cousins who have a legal problem and were therefore seeking advice on the issue.

Based on that, Counsel said his client allowed Mr Achana to come to his house.

“We are informed that when Mr Gabriel Achana arrived; he introduced two persons who he described as cousins to our client,” the petition stated.

Mr Marfo contended that when Mr Achana introduced the topic and the client and he (Mensah) realising that the discussion was going to centre on a case relating to Baah’s murder case and bail application, he suddenly lost interest in the discussion and informed Mr Achana and his two brothers now revealed as Tigereyepi, that since he been on the bench since 1991, he was not interested in taking anybody’s money.

"Thus our client's unwillingness to accept the money was clearly manifested in his demeanour when we watched the video footage of the incident.’’

Based on this, counsel said his client refused to even touch the money, compelling Mr Achana to put the money next to himself.

The petition said “the edited video footage demonstrably show that at no point in time did our client negotiated, accept, receive or even touch any money from Mr Achana or Tigereyepi for the purpose of granting bail to the accused person.

We are informed that upon refusal of our client to accept the money, they took it away at the close of deliberation but surprisingly that portion has been deleted from the video recordings."

According to Mr Marfo, there was nowhere in the footage that his client was captured for receiving any money from Mr Achana.

Counsel said the bribery allegation against Mr Justice Mensah was untrue because he did not touch or receive the money.

According to Mr Marfo, Justice Mensah told the accused person's lawyer that his case was a difficult one that he could not grant bail to Baah in spite of his friendship with the suspect lawyer.

Also Mr Marfo said the allegation that Mr Justice Mensah has 'strategized' severally to free Baah was "in correct" as same could not be supported by the attached transcript and edited video footage, adding, Mr Justice Mensah did not try criminal cases and it was factually incorrect that he acquitted the accused person.

More so, counsel said based on their searches, Baah has not been granted bail by their client and therefore could not be dismissed by the President of Ghana.

Following an expose by Investigative Journalist Anas Aremeyaw Anas, about 34 Magistrates and Judges have been caught up in the web of bribery and corruption.

Twenty-two magistrates and circuit court judges have been suspended, while the office of the CJ has written to some high Court Justices to respond to the allegation by September 14.

Some judges have filed separate writs challenging the premiering of the judicial scandal slatted on September 22.
 


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