11 September 2008

Sierra Leone: Johnny Paul's Dead Body Found in Liberia

Freetown — Remains of Special Court indictee and leader of the defunct armed forces revolutionary council, AFRC junta were said to have been discovered by a team of investigators on the advice of the prosecutor.

Johnny Paul Koroma's grave was allegedly excavated in the Liberian village of Foya in Lofa County with help from some Liberian and Sierra Leonean security personnel.

The former junta leader was indicted in March 2003 on 17 counts of war crimes by the UN-backed Special Court for Sierra Leone. He was later reported dead after rebel leader Foday Sankoh and his former commander Sam Maskita Rockarie.

Meanwhile, Sierra Leone's assistant inspector general of police in charge of crime services Francis Munu said information about the discovery in Liberia was news to them.

But chief of outreach and public affairs at the court in Freetown Peter Andersen said there was an ongoing investigation to the effect. He could not, however, confirm whether the discovered remains were those of the fugitive soldier who disappeared under mysterious circumstances in Freetown.

Yesterday, Liberia's National Chronicle newspaper corroborated the story of the excavation of the remains suspected to be that of Koroma.

The newspaper reported that Charles Taylor who is standing trial in The Hague for war crimes provided a tip off as to where Koroma's remains were interred. Other sources informed Concord Times that it was actually one of Charles Taylor's henchmen who provided the information that led to the discovery.

While it looks forward to the results from forensic experts the Special Court may come out with a comprehensive statement as to the authenticity of the remains of Johnny Paul.

Copyright © 2008 Concord Times. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.