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‘How dare you’ – Furious Judge warns second accused in Ato Forson case

During the ongoing trial of Minority Leader Cassiel Ato Forson and Richard Jakpa for alleged financial loss to the state, Richard Jakpa, the second accused person, received a strong warning from the court on Tuesday, June 20, regarding his behaviour that could be deemed contemptuous.

The warning came after an incident where Jakpa was nearly prevented from using the washroom while court proceedings were underway.

During the cross-examination of Cassiel Ato Forson’s first witness, Jakpa attempted to leave the courtroom for the washroom.

Initially hesitant, Justice Afia Serwaa Asare-Botwe eventually allowed Jakpa to use the washroom within the courtroom.

Afterwards, the judge offered sanitiser to Jakpa, but he expressed frustration at the judge for initially preventing him from using the washroom.

This outburst angered Justice Afia Serwaa Asare-Botwe, who took offence and deemed Jakpa’s actions contemptuous.

She cautioned Jakpa against any future disrespectful behaviour and warned that she would exercise her powers freely if he repeated such actions.

In a furious tone, she said, “How dare you speak to the court like that? This should be the very last time you will show disrespect to the court. If you do, I will fully use my powers,” citinewsroom.com reports

Meanwhile, Cassiel Ato Forson, the first accused person, started his defence by calling a subpoenaed witness from Stanbic Bank. The government had approached the bank to issue letters of credit for the purchase of 200 ambulances.

During the testimony, the witness revealed that the deal between the government and the bank did not materialize. However, he stated that he did not have all the necessary documents and requested a month to retrieve some of the archived documents related to the deal.

However, Justice Afia Serwaa Asare-Botwe did not see the relevance of the requested documents and rejected the request, stating that it would unduly delay the trial.

The trial continues as the court seeks to ascertain the facts surrounding the alleged financial loss to the state.

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