5 December 2012

Liberia: 148 Inmates Released On Probation

The release of seven inmates from the Monrovia Central Prison yesterday by Judge Peter W. Gbeneweleh of Criminal Court-C at the Temple of Justice totaled the number of pre-sentenced detainees on probation to 148 throughout the country.

Prior to Judge Gbeneweleh's ruling in the motion to grant pre-sentenced detainees on probation to the already seven released pre-sentenced detainees at Criminal Court-C, the nine pre-sentenced detainees according to court records committed crimes ranging from theft of property, misapplication of entrusted property among others.

Those currently enjoying the probation service granted by Judge Gbenewleh include William Toe, Moses Biomah, Boby Blejay, Sarr Tommy, Divad Mulbah, Rico Lasisi and Joseph Lewis.

Steven Toe and Mark Taylor were denied by the court on grounds that pre-sentenced detainee Toe left his father home without any tangible reason and stole LD$35,000 while pre-sentence detainee Taylor is without criminal record, but was still under detention at the Monrovia Central Prison.

Judge Gbeneweleh however warned the seven pre-sentenced detainees placed on probation to exhibit character change and at the same time ordered the probation service officers to conduct pre-sentence investigation on Toe and Taylor and submit report within five days.

Speaking to this paper following the granting of probation to seven pre-sentence detainees, the Coordinator of Probation Service at the Ministry of Justice said the entire probation service was created to reduce the number people in prison.

Mr. Ali Sylla said the probation program is designed to also give pre-sentenced detainees the second chance opportunity to recondition properly and integrate themselves into society.

According to the Probation Service Coordinator, pre-sentenced detainees are placed into the various communities where they undergo community service, vocation and technical school and other trainings.

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