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27 January 2017

Lawyer demands compensation for man wrongfully jailed 19 years

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Human rights Lawyer, Francis Xavier Sosu, is demanding compensation from the state for a 39-year-old man who was wrongfully jailed for 15 years for defiling and impregnating a 14-year-old student.

After serving his full jail term, it has emerged that is Eric Asante is not the father of the baby.

“What we want to do is get some compensation so Eric can put his life together and move on and we leave those people to themselves and to their conscience,” said Xavier Sosu.

A Tamale High Court in September 2005 sentenced Mr Asante to 15 years imprisonment with hard labour after he was found guilty of defiling Rubamatu Mohammed.

Although Eric Asante appealed against the sentence in 2006, it was dismissed.

In 2012, he went to the Supreme Court and the court granted him leave to file a notice of appeal against his conviction.

The notice of appeal was followed by an application for an order for the conduct of a DNA test on the child.

The Supreme Court accepted the application and accordingly ordered Rubamatu to make her child available for the DNA test initially at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital.

The court order was served and received on Rubamatu’s behalf by her aunts, Juliet Tinjina and Gladys Abokokpa, who were then taking care of Rubamatu’s child in Tamale.

Although the court gave eight weeks within which the test should be conducted, the family refused to bring the child to Accra as ordered by the court.

Following the intransigence of the child’s family, the Supreme Court on February 11, 2015, further ordered Juliet Tinjina and Gladys Abokokpa to make the child, who was under their care, available for the DNA test, this time at the Police Forensic Unit.

Summarising the report from the Forensic Laboratory of the Police Hospital at the court’s sitting on November 17, 2015, the judge said the result of the test excluded Mr Asante of having any biological relations with the 10-year-old boy who was alleged to be the outcome of the defilement.

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