Liberia: Court Grants Indicted Ex-CBL Official Medical Leave

Monrovia — Criminal Court 'C' Judge Yamie Quiqui Gbeisay has granted an indicted former official of the Central Bank of Liberia medical leave due to severe health complication.

Judge Gbeisay granted defendant David M. Farhat a medical leave on Wednesday, July 1. Defendant Farhai along with other ex-officials of the CBL were indicted by the grand jury of Montserrado County on June 8, 2020 for the commission of the crimes of Economic Sabotage, Criminal Conspiracy, among others.

They were charged in connection to the excess printing of over L$8 Billion Liberian banknotes.

Judge Gbeisay's decision to grant defendant Farhai medical leave was based on a submission made to the court by his legal team.

In the submission, Defense lawyer Cllr. Framer G. Stubblefield said defendant Farhai is suffering a medical complication and as such he needs medical attention.

"At this stage, one of counsels for Co- defendants David Farhai, Elsie Dossen Badio and Kollie Tamba beg to informs court that Co-defendant David M. Farhai is I'll and as such he needs medical attention," the request states.

"Counsel further says health being paramount, requests the court to grant him a leave for today's sitting so as to seek medical attention. Counsel says this request is made in good faith and it is in no way intended to baffle these proceedings."

In response, prosecution lawyer, Cllr. Jerry D. Garlarwolo accepted the defense request for defendant Farhai to be granted medical leave.

Cllr. Garlarwolo further added that the request made by the defense counsels is provided for under the Criminal Procedure Law.

"To which submission one of counsels for the State interposes no objection, same being in line with Chapter 2, subsection 2.4 of the Criminal Procedure Law," Garlarwolo said.

In his ruling, Judge Gbeisay said a temporary absence of a defendant from trial is allowed.

The judge ruled: "This court says in this jurisdiction, a temporary absence of a defendant from trial is allowed. More besides, assuming that defendant Farhai commits a crime for which he was been charged, he has to be alive to serve that punishment. Wherefore, the request of one of counsels for defendant is hereby granted and Farhai is Hereby allowed to go and seek medical attention."

Judge Gbeisay also ordered defendant Farhai to file a medical certificate to the Clerk of Court upon his return from treatment to authenticate his request.

"And whenever he is well and decides to return to this court, he shall return with medical certificate from a medical institution and same be filed with the Clerk of this court, so ordered," the Judge ordered.

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