18 March 2019

Liberia: Weeks, Sirleaf 'Face'

After being released from the Monrovia Central Prison a little over a week ago, the former Executive Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), Deputy Governor Charles Sirleaf along with three other senior officials of the Bank risked returning to their recent home again.

This is because state lawyers have requested the court to deny the bond of the indicted former and current CBL officials.

State prosecutors last week filed a seven-count exception to the bail bond secured by the defendants.

They are requesting the court to declare the bond invalid, inadequate and insufficient.

The defendants including Weeks, Sirleaf, Dorbor Hagba, Richard H. Walker, I, and Joseph G. Dennis have been indicted with Criminal Conspiracy, Economic Sabotage, Misuse of Public Money, Property or Records and Illegal Disbursement and Expenditure of Public Money.

Prosecutors said the court should set aside the criminal appearance bond aside, and rule the criminal defendants incarcerated at a common jail at the Monrovia Central Prison.

In count four of the exception, prosecution contended that the provision of the statute obtaining bail for the crime of Economic Sabotage, the Supreme Court of Liberia has opined that an accused person should have the right to choose any one of the four modes provided for under section 63.1 of the Civil Procedure Law.

"(Cash, Unencumbered real property on which taxes have been paid and which is held in fee by the person furnishing the bond, Valuables to the amount of the bond which are easily converted into cash or Sureties who meet the requirements of section 63.2) that is, an accused persons should not be restricted in his choice of bond," the state said.

"Plaintiff says that Co-defendants Milton A. Weeks, Charles E. Sirleaf are charged with and indicted for Economic Sabotage which falls under the referenced subchapter of the Penal Law and the amounts charged in the indictment are US$835,367.72 and L$2,645,000,000.00," prosecution said.

Prosecution said the bail bond to be filed to secure their release is US$835,367.72 and L$2,645,000,000.00 and not US$909,319.88 and US$240,000.00 as filed by the defendants, adding "hence, the inadequacy and insufficiency of the bonds for which same should be made adequate and sufficient or be ordered set aside by this Honorable Court.

Plaintiff says the amount of the bond therefore required for the defendants alternatively is US$1,670,735.44 (US$835,367.72X2) and L$5,290,000,000.00 (L$2,645,000,000.00×2) and not what is filed."

Charles Sirleaf has been recommended by prosecutors to be placed under house arrest until he can post valid Criminal Appearance Bond.

The state said the law for securing a bond to release an accused person charged with Economic Sabotage has been grossly ignored and neglected by the Court.

Liberia

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