28 December 2012

Liberia: PUL Detests Journalists' Detention On Christmas Day

A reporter of the In Profile Newspaper, Abraham Morris was made to spend Christmas night in jail at the Metro Police Deport on Center Street in Monrovia on his way to the printing press. According to reporter Morris, he was arrested and thrown behind bars for simply asking a police man, identified as Sonny Wilson to reduce the brightness of his motorbike light which was pointed in his face.

Police investigators at the Metro Station said the reporter had been charged with "disorderly conduct," because he allegedly insulted the officer. "See you in court after 48 hours," Police man Wilson is said to have boasted as he saw the journalist thrown in cell with common criminals.

Abraham was Wednesday released into the custody of Press of Union of Liberia President Peter Quaqua after the intervention of Police Spokesman, Sam Collins.

While promising to return the Journalist to the Police whenever he was needed, Mr. Quaqua said he believes the police officer had no will to prosecute the journalist, but only wanted to show power.

He said the incident was similar to the abuse by the Police Director who recently ordered the detention of reporter George Borteh of the New Republic, for simply taking the Director Chris Massaquoi's picture.

Mr. Quaqua alarmed: "Journalists and other helpless citizens are now living at the mercy of the police chief and trigger happy police officers who find it pleasing to throw people in jail at any instance to show that they have power and that they can abuse it with impunity."

The Union is awaiting the journalist to be charged to court and encourages the police officer to further the matter to disprove the notion that he was abusing power.

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