Liberia: Land, Sexual Related Cases Dominate Nimba Trial Docket

Judge Roland F. Dahn discloses

Cllr Roland F. Dahn, the newly assigned Resident Judge of the Eighth Judicial Circuit Court in Nimba County, said there are over 250 cases dominating the trial docket. The cases, he said include land, sexual and drug related cases, as well as some civil matters that are pending adjudication in the March Term of court.

Judge Dahn made the disclosure recently at the opening of the May Term of Court, held at the Eighth Judicial Circuit Court in Sanniquellie. He said there are 201 civil cases, and 78 criminal cases.

He further explained that among the 201 civil cases, 73 involved real estate or land related cases, while the others involved contracts, divorce, and debts.

Judge Dahn then warned that the issue of real estate cases must not be overemphasized, because it is increasing on a daily basis.

He said on the criminal docket, sexual-related cases dominate, followed by murder, manslaughter, and aggravated assaults, and drug-related cases,"

Judge Dahn called for more attention to the drug laws, and the growing use of illicit drugs, something he said was damaging many of the youth. He meanwhile called on the security apparatuses, to double the fight against drugs abuse, which involves the illegal use of narcotic substances.

"Those bringing the harmful substances into the country have spoiled our children, while they built fabulous homes from money they made from the sale of illegal drugs. Therefore, we need to stand strong," he said.

Few years ago, A Nigerian was arrested in Ganta with some consignment of cocaine hidden in his African slippers. He subsequently charged and sent to the Sanniquellie Magisterial Court for preliminary hearing, was placed under bond, but his kinsmen took him to Monrovia without being tried.

Challenges:

Judge Dahn has also outlined challenges facing the court, beginning with speedy trial as the failure of party litigants to make a follow up in the court lead to overcrowding of trial docket.

He said the court believes in first come first served basis, but victims and those who brought their case to court are not showing up to serve as witness for the prosecution to do it work.

He said that some of the criminal cases date years back, where the accused are in jail without being tried, while the complaints or the victims' family sit at home without perusing the case to help the prosecuting team.

Judge Dahn: "How will those cases be removed from the trial docket, if the party litigants refused to show up for hearing."

Dahn took over from Judge Emery Paye as the new Resident Judge of the Eighth Judicial Circuit Court on February 12, 2019. Paye has being retired at age 70.

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