A Mombasa trader jailed for 22 years with an additional fine of Sh8 million for drug trafficking has suffered a blow after a court declined to grant him bond pending the conclusion of his appeal.
Ahmed Said Bakari was jailed last year but later moved to the High Court to appeal against the sentence after he was convicted of trafficking heroin worth Sh30 million.
High Court Judge Njoki Mwangi dismissed an application by the trader who sought to be granted bond pending the hearing and determination of his appeal.
The appellant told the court that his appeal is likely to take long to conclude and therefore wanted to be freed to continue providing for his family as he fights to prove his innocence.
Justice Mwangi said the appellant did not give adequate reasons to enable the court to grant him bond pending the conclusion of his appeal.
The Director of Public Prosecutions, through Prosecution Counsel Jami Yamina, had opposed the appellant’s request for bond, arguing that he is likely to abscond.
YET TO PAY FINE
The DPP noted that the appellant is yet to pay the Sh8 million he was fined and hence he may abscond or delay the disposal of the appeal if granted bond.
The prosecutor further said that the appellant has not provided exceptional circumstances warranting him to get bond pending the appeal and that the grounds upon which the application is premised fail to demonstrate any overwhelming chances of the success of his appeal.
Mr Bakri, in his appeal, argues that he was charged and convicted on a defective charge and that he was jailed on mere suspicion, which was not supported by convincing evidence.
“The findings of the trial court were not supported by evidence, particularly with regard to the possession of the box in which drugs were allegedly found,” he said in his court papers.
Mr Bakari was jailed after being found guilty of trafficking the drugs, which were destined to Madagascar, but he wants the sentence set aside.
He is serving the sentence together with an accomplice, Clement Serge Bristol, a Sychellois who was sentenced to 10 years with an additional fine of Sh5 million.