Liberia: Ex-Rebel Grabbed for Stealing

Ex-ULIMO-J Rebel Ophoree Diah has been hooked in another legal crisis after nearly six years of conviction in the mercenary case that took a center stage at the Temple of Justice in Monrovia.

It can be recalled that Diah was among 17 ex-fighters and Rebel leaders convicted in 2015 under the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf led-Government for the crime of Mercenaryism and were sentenced to life imprisonment, but later released on Executive Clemency by the same Government after several negotiations.

Diah, who was convicted by Criminal Court "A" for engaging in Mercenaryism in neighboring Ivory Coast in 2014, forwarded to the Monrovia City Court on July 13, 2021 on charges of theft of property and unauthorized use of vehicle and misapplication of entrusted property.

This is a violation of Chapter 15, section 15.51 A&B, misapplication of entrusted property, Chapter 15, section 15.55 of the revised penal law of Liberia pending trial by Court of competent.

The police charge was predicated upon a complaint filed against the former rebel commander by a Liberian residing in the United States for rubbing her of sixty-five thousands United States dollars.

According to the police charge sheet, Lucretia K. Turnquist in 2020, wired to Liberia over sixty-five Thousand United States dollars (US$65,000) to counselor Roosevelt Gould to purchase a dump truck for her.

Prior to madam Lucretia K. Turnquist wiring the cash, Cllr. Roosevelt Gould was hired by suspect Dish and Madam Ellen Corkrun to serve as legal representative in drafting an Article of Incorporation for a company that to be established as Wolf David Inc. wherein suspect Diah was to have had 50% share and a son of madam Ellen Corkrun as having 50% share.

Given the connection or link that existed between Cllr. Gould and defendant Diah during the period under review and when Cllr. Gould on behalf of the complainant, had paid the full amount of sixty-five Thousand United States dollars to the management of ever Green Import and Export (LIB) corporation located Congo town, Monrovia Liberia for a white 2019 Howo Sino dump truck.

The charge sheet indicated that the vehicle remained park at Ever Green Import and Export (LIB) Corporation up until the company management informed Cllr. Gould that they could no longer keep the vehicle at their premises.

"While, Cllr. Gould was looking for area to have the truck kept, defendant Diah opted and chose to have said vehicle kept at his premises which Cllr. Gould agreed and immediately communicated verbally with Ever Green Import and Export LIB corporation. That led to providing full disclosure of defendant Diah's identity as person that will take custody of the truck," the document noted.

As the result, defendant Diah took along with him a driver only identified as Fayiah who drove the vehicle to a place where defendant Diah chose to be keep until the arrival of complainant Turnquist to Liberia. Given the above, defendant Diah was invited by the investigation and advice to bring forth the 2019 Sino dump truck, but he refused to do so.

That, the vehicle registration documents and the hand to hand bill of sale for white 2019 Howo Sino Dump truck obtained from Ministry of transport and Ever Green Import and Export LIB Corporation carried the name of complainant Turnquist as owner thus giving her title to the vehicle.

That 2019, Howo Sino Dump truck bearing serial number 191207052987, chassis number LZZ5ELSD3LD599353, engine capacity-6 cylinder, color white model-2020 and made in China, is presently being possessed by defendant Diah who up to present, has not shown title documents or any written instruments to show cause why he should not give the vehicle to the complainant who has a valid title.

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