The solidarity that was initially exhibited by artists of Sierra Leone for the death of their colleague, David Sydney Buckle, alias DJ Clef, who was allegedly murdered in May last year and dumped around Murray town, has seriously dwindled with none of them now being present at the ongoing trial in the High Court before Justice Alusine Sesay.
At the inception of the trial, the group comprising Artist for Peace, All Stars and other Sierra Leonean artists released a tribute song in solidarity of their deceased colleague.
The song was being played on national radio and television stations across the country, but sadly the said artists have long abandoned the trial.
The prosecution closed its case fortnight ago, excepting the defense lawyers to address the court on the issue of ‘no-case submission’, but that has again been stalled due to the absence of jurors.
On two consecutive occasions, the presiding judge, Justice Alusine Sesay, had to prematurely adjourn the trial.
On the last adjourned date, three of the jurors were absent, while two of them failed to show up yesterday in court and that has apparently stalled the response of the defense to debunk the allegation of the prosecution.
The accused persons-Mbamba Moiforay aka ‘LA Chocolate’, Foday Amara Kamara and Avril Oredola Renner are before the court for capital offences and are tried by a judge and 12-man jury.
The absence of any of the jurors would cause the trial to be adjourned.
Meanwhile, Foreman for the jurors told the court that he contacted one of the absentees on telephone and that the said man told him that he was on his way to the court.
This apparently angered the judge as the trial is now little above one year. He noted that the honeymoon for absent jurors was over.
“I have to order the arrest of both jurors who are absent. They have to be confined at the Central prison and would be brought to court along with the accused persons on the next adjourned date,” he stated.
He added that “These two jurors have to be arrested and remanded with immediate effect”.
He insisted that it was necessary to send a strong message to all jurors that he could no longer accept their being absent in court.
“We are almost at the end of the trial and they have to be here until the final addresses are made. I have to summon them for final decision,” he noted.
However, Director of Public Prosecution, Suliaman A. Bah who prosecutes the matter, pleaded with the Bench to be magnanimous with the jurors and save them from facing the wrath of the law.
Meanwhile, one of the defense counsels, Ishmael Philip Mammie said he was very disappointed in the jurors because their absence has delayed the trial.
The trio on May 25, 2015 alleged to have murdered David Sydney Buckle, alias ‘DJ Clef’, at the Aberdeen residence of the first accused, and were charged with two counts of conspiracy to murder and murder contrary to law.