The State Attorney and the Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife vs BESONG NGEM Macdonald AYUK and EWANE Jean Bosco

Country
Territorial subdivision
Type of court
Seat of court
Tiko
Court jurisdiction
Date of opinion
2016
Abstract

On the 9 December 2014, elements of the Regional Delegation of Forestry and Wildlife Buea received a letter from military officials who were on a mixed control mission in the town of Misselele, about a seizure of pangolin scales and elephant ivories carried out on the 8 December. The regional delegate sent a team to the judicial police to this effect. 68 ivories and 06 bags of giant pangolin scales were recorded. On the facts leading to the arrest, the accused Ebella Lyonga a public transport driver was arrested at the Missellele checkpoint with sealed bags containing ivories. He pointed out the passenger in charge of the goods Ewane Jean who further pointed Besong Ngem, as the one who entrusted him with the goods to take to Tiko. Besong pointed out a certain Mike ALABALA and the accused AWOUDOU as owners of the goods who asked him to transport them to Tiko for onward transmission to Nigeria. They paid him 37.000XAF. He claimed he was not aware of the contents as he was told it contained clothes and bags of fish. Upon his arrest, he called the owner Mike ALABALA who in turn sent his brother, AWODU. After recording their statements, AWODU and the bus driver EBELLA were released. Besong asked why the principal offender AWODU was released, the police officer said instructions came from above. Besong Ngem and Ewane Jean were then forwarded together with the seized products as exhibits to the State Attorney of the Court of First Instance, Tiko for prosecution.

Language of document
French
Reference number
No. CFIT/1C/2015
Charges
Illegal trafficking of trophies of totally protected animal species (Elephant ivories and giant pangolin scales).
Money value
Unknown
Transnational
No
Decision
The court declared the accused not guilty, were discharged and acquitted. Since the criminal action was dismissed, the civil claim was set aside as well. The cost of proceedings 20.000XAF according to section 400(2) of the Penal Code was borne by the Public Treasury.
Appealed
Yes