Aisha Huang fires lawyer Nkrabea Effah Dartey

Source The Ghana Report

Chinese ‘Galamsey Queen’, Aisha Huang, has sacked her lawyers, led by Captain (retd) Nkrabea Effah Dartey, from representing her in the ongoing illegal mining trial.

The veteran lawyer and his team have been representing the Chinese national who is standing trial for four charges since she was first arraigned in court on September 16.

However, in court on Monday, November 21, when the case was called, a new set of lawyers, Miracle Atta-Chey and Hope Agboado, made an appearance for her.

When the Director of Public Prosecution, Mrs Yvonne Attakora Oboubisah, asked if they were representing Effah Dartey, they said no.

It remains unclear why Aisha Huang would replace Capt. (rtd.) Nkrabea Effah Dartey as her lawyer.

At the last court sitting on November 16, 2022, Effah Dartey told the court to fix the next sitting date for November 17 because he had a scheduled medical appointment with his doctors at the 37 Military Hospital.

The former New Patriotic Party (NPP) MP has been the legal counsel for the controversial Chinese since 2018, representing her both at the circuit and high courts in the first galamsey prosecutions that were eventually discontinued by the state.

Capt. (rtd.) Nkrabea Effah Dartey also represented Aisha Huang on the new charges on illegal mining and entry into the country, both of which are running concurrently at the circuit and high courts.

He has already cross-examined the 1st and 2nd prosecution witnesses and was scheduled to cross-examine the 3rd prosecution witness.

However, the new lawyers of Aisha Huang, led by Miracle Atta-Chey, are taking on the witness under cross-examination.

Facts of the case

As narrated in court, the complainants are security and intelligence officers, and the accused are Chinese nationals.

The prosecution said Aisha had gained “notoriety” for engaging in small-scale mining activities known as galamsey across the country.

It said in 2017, Aisha was arrested for a similar offence, but she managed to “sneak out” of the country, averting prosecution.

The prosecution said early this year, Aisha “sneaked” into Ghana, having changed the details on her Chinese passport.

The suspect is said to have applied for a Togo visa and went through the borders into Ghana.

Aisha then resumed small-scale mining activities without a license and further engaged in the purchase and sale of minerals in Accra without valid authority as granted by the Minerals and Mining Act.

The prosecution said she engaged in the sale and purchase of minerals with the three accused persons and that intelligence led to their arrest.

What are the charges?

  • Undertaking a mining operation without a license is contrary to section 99(2)(a) of the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006, Act 703 as amended by the Minerals and Mining (Amendment) Act 2019, Act 995.
  • Facilitating the participation of persons engaged in a mining operation contrary to section 99 (2)(a) & (3) of the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006, Act 703 as amended by the Minerals and Mining (Amendment) Act 2019, Act 995
  • Illegal employment of foreign nationals contrary to section 24 of the Immigration Act, 2000 (Act 573)
  • Entering Ghana while prohibited from re-entry contrary to section 20(4) of the Immigration Act, 2000, Act 573.
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