Court grants Rabih Haddad, alleged rape suspect bail

Rabih Haddad, the 39-year-old Lebanese Businessman accused of raping his 19-year-old domestic help, was on Monday granted bail in the sum of GH¢500,000.00 with two sureties by an Accra High Court.
Delivering its ruling on bail, pending an appeal application, the trial judge Mr Justice Justine Kofi Dorgu, further ordered that one of the two sureties should be a Ghanaian and he or she must provide a justification.
It further ordered that the two sureties must submit their passport pictures to the Court’s Registrar.
Additionally, the Court further ordered Haddad to submit his passport to the Court’s Registrar and he must write to the Court anytime he intends travelling outside the jurisdiction.
Speaking to journalists in Accra after the ruling, Mr Ralph Poku Adusei, the Defence Counsel said he was happy and commended the court for “exhibiting brevity”, adding that, the rule of law was at work.
He said he was satisfied with the bail condition saying; “we are prepared to meet the bail conditions. We want to prove to the whole world that Haddad is innocent”.
The court in its ruling quizzed the prosecutor why it had earlier arrested Haddad on November 30, last year and charged him with assault, only to change it after two days to rape.
The court further wondered why the victim in the matter failed to report the matter of rape when the issue was fresh on her mind and evidence gathered to that effect but waited until two days after.
According to the court, the request for a DNA report shows that the respondent was now going to fish out for information.
On the ailment of the applicant, the court noted that, that could not be the basis for granting bail, but explained that bail could be granted if the condition of the applicant was deteriorating.
Mr Adusei earlier informed the Court that Haddad’s wife and two kids had been thrown out of their apartment.
According to the Defence Counsel, the wife was expecting the Court to grant her husband bail “to enable him to find the family a good sleeping place”.
Mr Adusei drew the Court’s attention to the fact that the matter before it was a “human rights crisis,” which ought to be heard, adding that, the facts of the matter did not support the charge and his client has a heart related ailment.
Counsel who pleaded alibi, contended that his client was also innocent.
On December 5, last year, a District Court, in Accra, remanded Haddad into Police custody over a charge of rape.
The State has, however filed an affidavit in opposition to the bail application saying that accused had no fixed place of abode and would interfere with witnesses who were workers at his residence.
The State further drew the court’s attention to the nature of the offence and the severity of punishment if the applicant was found guilty at the end of the trial.
The facts, as narrated by the Prosecution at the District Court, were that the victim was a 19-year-old Togolese, who was engaged as a domestic house help at the residence of Haddad.
Haddad resides at Airport Hills, Accra.
The Prosecution said in November, last year, the, alleged victim was employed by the accused as a house help and she shared the boys’ quarters of the house with another house help.
The Prosecution said ever since the alleged victim moved to the house the accused had persistently harassed her and insisted on having sexual intercourse with her anytime other occupants of the house, including Haddad’s wife, were out of the premises.
The Prosecution said in the afternoon of November 30, last year, Haddad lured the victim into one of the rooms upstairs in the house and had sex with her.
It said the victim reported the incident to a co-worker in the house but they both kept the incident to themselves for the fear of losing their jobs.
On December 2, between 16:00 hours and 17:00 hours when Haddad’s wife and kids had gone out, Haddad reportedly requested for coffee from the alleged victim.
She then proceeded to the kitchen to prepare the coffee when Haddad then approached her and demanded sex from her.
The Prosecution said the victim resisted and this infuriated Haddad, who slapped her on the face and held her neck and dragged her into the master bedroom.
According to the Prosecution, Haddad stripped her naked and had sex with her.
It said after the act, the accused warned her not to inform anyone and then took his bath and left the house in his car.
The Prosecution said the victim, for the second time, reported her ordeal to a co-worker, who in turn passed the information to a Police Officer on duty nearby.
The matter was, therefore, reported to the Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit (DOVVSU) at the Airport, upon which Haddad was arrested.
The Prosecution said the victim was issued with a medical report form to seek treatment while a DNA test was to be conducted to confirm true or otherwise the allegation of rape.
Haddad has, however, denied the offence, the Prosecution said.

Source: GNA

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