Seized money-in-tyre appeal fails


18-April-2012

The Supreme Court had argued the money – including R527,000 hidden in a spare wheel and 33,700 euros found in his premises – could only have been benefit from criminal conduct, noting Mr Allisop was a tradesman whose monthly income could only have been only a few thousands, yet he spent R33,000 annually on travel alone”.

“I cannot conceive a legitimate businessman who – instead of banking his money be it in savings or working capital, in the bank, keeps it stashed away in the spare tyre of a car or rice cooker,” chief justice Fredrick Egonda-Ntende had said in part before making his order.

Among the appeals was another by Roy Beeharry who was sentenced to eight and a half years for what the Supreme Court believed was his part in a 2008 drug trafficking incident.

The Court of Appeal set him free citing irregularities in the prosecution’s case which led to Beeharry’s 15 grounds of appeal.

The appeal judges noted the serious situation regarding drugs in the country but added they could not “do a great right by doing a little wrong”.

“We know too well the pressures on the police, the prosecution and the courts to secure convictions and put away drug traffickers.

“It is certainly tempting to bow to public opinion but we must do our work according to our judicial and constitutional oaths and only consider the evidence before us.”

Judges Francis MacGregor, Anthony Fernando and Mathilda Twomey found there was no prejudice during the trial of Raymond Francis who was convicted on trafficking 100.8 grammes of cannabis in 2010 and so dismissed his appeal.

A total of 20 cases were listed for hearing by the Court of Appeal but lawyers requested five to be postponed, so the court ruled on 15 during its April 2 to 13 sitting.
The court is due to meet next in August.

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