3 December 2012

Liberia: Nigerian Rearrested for Armed Robbery

Amos Joseph Chinedu, a Nigerian described by police as a "hard-core" armed robber who claimed to have been released on bail by Judge James W. Zotaa of Criminal Court 'D' Saturday was rearrested by police at a local bank in Monrovia where he had gone to withdraw US$2,000 from his account.

Suspect Chinedu and others who remain at large were charged with armed robbery and criminal conspiracy last March while allegedly attempting to rob the International Bank.

Deputy Police Commander for Operation, Abraham Kromah said the Nigerian suspect was rearrested based on a tip-off.

"My point to this brother is that under our Liberian Law armed robbery is not a bail-able offense. You can't bail an armed robbery. So, to show this paper and make a justification after being convicted of armed robbery for me it is nonsense. We will keep him in detention and investigate. But as far as we are concerned, he is an armed robber and he should not be in the street," he pointed out.

"We cannot say much now because suspect Amos Joseph Chinedu is undergoing investigation as to how he was released. Moreover, we are not convinced by this paper that he is carrying around. Thank you," he stressed. The suspect obtained the document that released him on bail.

He informed reporters that his arrest has been stage-managed by the police and others only to damage his reputation.

He said he was previously arrested by the police on a different charge and not on a charge of armed robbery as police alleged.

"I was arrested in March for issuing bad checks and not for armed robbery. I'm surprised to see the police linking me to armed robbery," pointed out.

Although he claimed to be innocent of the armed robbery charge, his document revealed that he was released on bail for armed robbery on October 22, 2012 by presiding Judge James W. Zotaa of Criminal Court 'D'.

For some time now, the Criminal Court "D" has granted a motion to restore the rights of suspected armed robbers who had been in detention at the Monrovia Central Prison without trial for a period beyond statutory limits.

Section 18. 2 of the criminal law says "Anyone that is accused of an indictable offense much be indicted and tried within two terms of court".

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