A seven-member jury is expected to be empanelled to take over the rape trial of showbiz icon and broadcaster Kwasi Kyei Darkwah aka KKD.
The state prosecutor, Malike Woanya, yesterday told an Accra Fast Track High Court that the prosecution wanted a date for the jury to be constituted to hear the case.
Explaining the stance of the prosecution, she said the case was being heard in the court for the first time and as such it was necessary to take a date for hearing, taking into consideration the fact that the trial was by indictment, which required the composition of a jury.
However, a visibly miffed Anthony Forson Jnr, counsel for KKD, told the court he was unhappy with the request by the state, especially since it had been a month since the accused was convicted.
He was emphatic that he had been treated unfairly by the state attorney, who he insisted should have ‘whispered’ the decision of the prosecution to him.
According to Mr Forson, the prosecutor should have told him that the case was not starting yesterday ‘as a matter of courtesy at the Bar.’
KKD’s lawyer further complained, ‘You don’t treat your learned friend at the Bar that way; you don’t do that.’
Despite Mr Forson’s resentment over his ‘ambush,’ he said he would oblige the prosecution in respect of its request.
Justice Bright Mensah, admitting that the case was being heard in the court for the first time, stated that it could not have been started yesterday because there was a queue (of cases).
He accordingly adjourned hearing of the case to April 22, 2015 for the jury to be put in place for the trial to start.
KKD appeared in court yesterday with his stylish walking aide dressed casually in a T-shirt and wearing a pair of sandals accompanied by his father and Okyeame Kwame, a hiplife artiste.
He was last month committed for trial at the High Court by a Kaneshie district magistrate after prosecution had said it had established enough grounds to secure conviction for the accused, despite the spirited arguments by KKD’s lawyers for the court to reject the request.
KKD, who is also the Chief Executive of the Finest Productions, is facing a one-count charge of raping Ewuraffe Orleans Thompson, the 19-year-old victim, in the bathroom of African Regent Hotel at the Airport West residential area.
Although the complainant in the case had in a January 15, 2015 letter to the prosecution declared her desire to drop the case against the showbiz icon cum broadcaster, state prosecutors think otherwise.
Earlier, at the magistrate court the prosecution had said it was sure it had enough evidence to prosecute the case.
According to the Bill of Indictment prepared by the state, the alleged rape incident occurred at the hotel in Accra on December 27, 2014, when the victim had accompanied her cousin, Abena Konadu Owusu-Akyaw, to a show dubbed ‘Rip The Runway Fashion Show’.
It said when they arrived at the hotel, they met one Kofi Kyei, Abena Konadu’s brother – one of the organisers of the event – and since the event had not started they decided to stroll around.
According to the document, on their way out at the drop-off area, they met KKD who complimented their beauty, adding that together they walked to the hotel lobby where KKD introduced them to his cousin, Kofi Okyere Darko (KOD) and Benny Blanco and told them they were his new friends.
Prosecution stated that after the pleasantries, KKD told the victim and her cousin that he would make them the faces of the Ghana Tourism Campaign after which a publicist by name Ameyaw Debrah and KKD took photographs of them.
The accused and Effe, together with Abena, Benny Blanco and KOD, later took a lift to a suite in the hotel.
Prosecution said in the living room, the victim and her cousin were offered drinks but they refused and KKD then went to the washroom, came out, and invited Effe to help him with his make-up.
According to the Bill of Indictment, ‘as soon as she entered the bathroom, the accused locked the door and pulled her by the hand, held her really close and started caressing her.
‘She was alarmed and pulled away but the accused got aggressive, turned her round and bent her over the wash hand basin and tried penetrating her from behind.’
It further stated that the complainant resisted, screamed and begged KKD—who had removed his pants—to leave her alone, adding that ‘she cried and begged the accused to let her go as she was a virgin and had not done anything like that before.’
The Bill of Indictment however stated that KKD’s overwhelming body weight on Ms Orleans Thompson made it difficult for her to free her hands and push him away.
It indicated, ‘Since the accused refused to let her go, in trying to deter him, she asked if he (KKD) had a condom but he said he did not have a condom…she tried outwitting the accused by saying she would come over another time in order for him to let her go but the accused did not budge.’
The prosecution indicated that KKD opened the complainant’s thighs, pulled her panties down and finally succeeded in penetrating her. After having sex with her against her will, she was bleeding and KKD handed her tissue paper to wipe up and told her to sit on the water closet and allow the blood to flow.
‘The accused gave her more tissue to pad up as he washed his penis (and) promised to give her Postinor to avoid pregnancy,’ the document stated.
KKD is currently on a bail he secured at the
Human Rights Court on humanitarian grounds in the sum of GH¢20,000 with two sureties.
Kwesi Kyei Darkwah aka KKD and the dad(2nd left) at the court
What’s A Jury?
A jury is a sworn body of people convened to render an impartial verdict (a finding of fact on a question) officially submitted to them by a court , or to set a penalty or judgment .
Modern juries tend to be found in courts to ascertain the guilt, or lack thereof, in a crime.
In Anglophone jurisdictions, the verdict may be guilty or not guilty ( not proven , a verdict of acquittal based on the state’s failure to prove guilt rather than any proof of innocence).
Members are supposed to inform themselves of the crimes and then of the details of the crimes.
However, a jury trial or trial by jury is a legal proceeding in which a jury either makes a decision or makes findings of fact , which then direct the actions of a judge . It is distinguished from a bench trial in which a judge or panel of judges make all decisions.
By Jeffrey De-Graft Johnson
Pix by Gifty Ama Lawsom
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