The New Dawn (Monrovia)

12 November 2013

Liberia: ERU Accused of Brutality

Nimba County — Report from Sanniquellie, Nimba County suggests that a group of an Emergency Response Unit of the Liberia National Police allegedly flogged a group of men, who had gathered at a local entertainment center for a happy day.

Some of the victims at the 'happy Corner' entertainment Center told our correspondent in Sanniquellie that the group of ERU officers headed by the county commander placed them under house arrest and flogged them, as well as taking away their belongings, including cell phones. According to them, while playing their normal card games at the center, the ERU entered and began to brutalize them.

One of the victims, Alex Paye, disclosed to our correspondent that they usually visit the Happy Corner entertainment to play cards, but were, this time around, allegedly intercepted by the ERU officers based in Sanniquellie, and asked to turn themselves over to the Liberia National Police for questing-something they rejected.

When contracted, the County Commander for the ERU, Kindess Dagadu, told our Nimba county correspondent confirmed the arrest of the young men, attributing the police action to gambling.

He, however, denied the brutalization of the young men, saying they were only arrested for investigation.The owner of the center was not arrested for questioning, as reports alleged that the center was also in drug trafficking. It can be recalled that a group of ERU officers, who recently alleged gang-rape a 23-year old girl in Yekepa, is yet to be prosecuted in court.

In a related development, several citizens of Ganta have accused the police assigned in the city of extortion, especially from relatives of inmates at the Ganta Police station. When contracted, the Commander of the Ganta Police Station, James Payne denied the report, but told our correspondent that he would further investigate.

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