Local Goa News

Monday, September 26, 2016

Untrustworthy witnesses, use of drugs and inaction by police

PANAJI: In a judgment that captures the nightlife of Goa where drugs are openly consumed and the offenders escape liability, the Goa children's court has observed that 'Luis Shack's' owner Luis Coutinho has deposed in a manner to save him from criminal action under the NDPS Act in the Scarlett case.

Coutinho told the court that he does not permit his customers to consume narcotic drugs in his shack, but, later added that he does not object to customers bringing drugs to his shack, if they were ordering drinks.
"An inference can be safely drawn in respect of such improved version of Coutinho, that he has deposed in this manner to save himself from the criminal liability under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985, (NDPS Act) and also for the breach of conditions of the licences issued to him by the tourism department and excise department. Thus, he cannot be considered to be a trustworthy witness," Goa children court president Vandana Tendulkar observed.
Another witness, Murli Sagar, deposed and stated about his consumption of cocaine and other narcotic substance in Luis Shack. Further, he also stated that he never noticed drugs at Luis Shack. But, once again in course of deposition, he also stated about sniffing of cocaine by him in Luis Shack with the accused and prime witness Michael Mannion alias Mike Masala.
"Such a testimony of Sagar which is totally inconsistent in itself and full of omissions and contradictions on material aspects, makes him an uncreditworthy witness. An inference can be drawn to the effect that in order to save himself from any charges under the NDPS Act, this witness might have resiled from his earlier statements, time and again" the court observed. Such inconsistent evidence through Sagar is insufficient to establish the third incriminating circumstance of availability of cocaine in the kitchen of shack at the relevant time, the judge noted.
It is quite possible, as claimed by the accused, Samson D'Souza, that in order to save themselves from various liabilities in respect of their acts of violation of certain laws, these witnesses have supported the case of prosecution against the accused, the judge observed.

TOI Goa News

No comments:

Post a Comment