Defence lawyers for Osafo Anthony, a Ghanaian journalist who stands accused with three others to have conspired to extort money from Black Stars Captain Asamoah Gyan, have challenged the authenticity of an amount of $1,000 which was tendered in court as evidence against the accused persons.
The lawyers argued that the particular money tendered to the court as evidence against Osafo Anthony was not the same money that was taken from him when he was arrested.
The other three accused persons are Sarah Kwablah, Ekow Micah and Chris Handler.
Maurice Ampaw, lawyer for Sarah, Osafo and Ekow, further argued that there is no proof the accused person even signed a document which was attached to the money.
Osafo is accused to have signed an undertaking that he was demanding the money from the footballer so as to kill a negative story against the latter.
Maurice Ampaw said when the dollars were retrieved from Osafo, the document he signed was handwritten, but the document presented in court was a typed one.
Lamti Apanga, representing Chris Handler, also supported the claim that the money the state prosecutors had sought to tender was not the same one taken from Osafo.
While raising his objection to the tendering of the dollars, Lamti Apanga argued that even the document accompanying the money so tendered was not signed by the investigator, Chief Inspector Richard Ayeyi himself but by a different person.
The judge, Ms Afia Agbanu Kumador, after minutes of haggling between the lawyers and the prosecution ruled that the dollars would be admitted in evidence for whatever it was worth.
Under cross examination, Lawyer Ampaw wondered if Chief Inspector Ayeyi was aware that the complainant and manager of Asamoah Gyan, Samuel Anim Addo, had had talks with Osafo to kill the story about Gyan’s alleged sexual intercourse with Sarah.
Hearing continues on August 25, 2016. The four are standing trial for allegedly extorting GH¢25,000 from Samuel Anim Addo by means of threat.
Anthony and Chris are currently on bail in the sum of GH¢60,000 with three sureties each, while Micah was bailed in the sum of GH¢20,000 with one surety.
Sarah is also on bail in the sum of GH¢60,000 with three sureties.
Anim Addo had earlier told the court that the accused persons had threatened Asamoah Gyan with evidence of text messages to defame him (Gyan) and subsequently follow it with a publication of a sex video if some amounts of money were not paid.
According to Addo, Sarah was the first to threaten and he reported the case to the Odorkor Police.
Anim Addo said Osafo Anthony, as a result, demanded an amount of GH¢30,000 and threatened to publish more negative stories against Gyan if the money was not paid.
The complainant said he reported the threats to the police and was advised to feign interest in the payment of the money, stressing that he met Osafo at an agreed venue and paid GH¢10,000 cash and a cheque of GH¢15,000, whereupon the journalist was arrested.
Source: Daily Guide