There was drama at the trial of the four persons charged with allegedly extorting money from Asamoah Gyan, the captain of the Ghana national football team, when the judge in open court warned popular reggae musician Lester Ekow Micah, one of the accused persons in the case.
Mrs Afia Agbanu Kumador, who could no longer entertain Ekow who kept on making gestures and raising his hand in the dock, asked the accused to behave properly or risk being thrown out.
She observed that at the last sitting Ekow did that and she asked him to stop, stressing that he had repeated the same thing yesterday.
“Speak to your lawyer…or I will sack you,” the judge warned.
The position of the court compelled Lamtiig Apanga to apologise to the judge for the attitude of the 43-year-old musician.
Minutes after the judge had openly reprimanded him, Ekow launched a scathing attack on the journalists covering the case, singling out DAILY GUIDE’s reporter.
He accused the journalist of skewing his reportage on the case because he had been “bought.”
In the view of the musician who recently narrowly escaped jail in relation to a narcotics-related case, journalists like him ought to investigate issues and report on same.
Although he could not tell who the reporter’s paymasters were, Ekow was empathic that this reporter was a stomach journalist who put his stomach above Ghana.
The accused person’s assumed new role as a lecturer of Journalism and an apostle of morality was not the first.
Last year, Ekow took this same reporter to the cleaners when he claimed the reporter had used his old pictures for his story, even though he again failed to prove that those pictures were not him.
Other accused persons in the dock with Ekow are Osafo Anthony, a 29-year-old journalist, Sarah Kwablah, 21, and Chris Handler, a Blogger.
Sarah and the others have been variously charged with conspiring to extort money from Samuel Anim Addo, while Ekow Micah has been slapped with the charge of abetment.
The four persons are being tried for allegedly extorting GH¢25,000 from Addo by means of threat.
Earlier, Lamtiig subjected the manager of the international footballer to a gruelling session of cross-examination on the alleged audio recording capturing four persons discussing and planning to extort money from Asamoah Gyan.
Anim Addo, among other things, told the court that the accused persons indeed planed to extort money from his boss and that he also feigned interest in paying the said money for Osafo to stop publishing the stories about Asamoah.
When questioned as to which of the four persons had demanded money from him, he said Osafo, insisting that he approached the accused to pay to kill the stories.
He told the court that although he was not Asamoah Gyan, he acted for and on behalf of the footballer.
Meanwhile the prosecution, led by Chief Supt Duuti Tuaruka, is set to present a supposed video evidence to further tighten the noose around the necks of the accused persons.
The trial judge nonetheless urged the prosecution to make provision for the video recording.
Sitting continues on February 22.
By Jeffrey De-Graft Johnson