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Crime & PunishmentGeneralLiberia news

Government accused of leniency

-in US$100 Million cocaine probe

By Emmanuel wise Jipoh 

The Government of Liberia has been accused of being too lenient in the ongoing investigation surrounding the recent US$100 million cocaine arrested and destroyed by officers of the Liberia Drugs Enforcement Agency and the National Security Agency (NSA) at SONIT Liberia Inc. frozen food cold storage in Topoe Village Monrovia, earlier this month.

The Government through the Ministry of Justice seems to be dragging its feet into the US$100million drugs saga, as TRH Trading Corporation, a conglomeration of ABI Jaoudi, AJA Group holdings whose accounts were recently frozen by the Financial Intelligence Agency (FIA) for alleged tax evasion and later lifted with a fine on the company pending.

Nimba County District#5 Representative Samuel Kogar says the Government of Liberia is lenient in the US$100 million drugs saga, expressing doubt whether those actually involved in the syndicate would ever be brought to justice in accordance with the Law of Liberia.

Speaking to scores of citizens in Paynesville City outside Monrovia, Representative Kogar notes that the batch of cocaine valued at US$100M was such a colossal consignment whose investigation must be a national priority and should not appear to end or lose steam at the burning of the substances.

Justice-Minister-Dean-addressed-the-media-before-setting-ablze-seized-cocaine

The cocaine weighing 520 kilograms was destroyed by the government recently but the Nimba lawmaker says investigation into apprehending all of the perpetrators has been weak.

He further stressed that those charged with the responsibility of pursuing the culprits, including the Liberia Drugs Enforcement Agency (LDEA), the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Ministry of Justice have been very slow.

He said only stronger hands from the government will bring perpetrators to book while pointing out that Liberia has repeatedly been designated by powerful countries’ anti-drugs agencies and organizations, as one of the major transit points in Africa for illegal drugs destined for Europe and other parts of the world, so government should not adopt a low-key approach into the matter.

The drugs, according to the NSA and LDEA, were transiting from North America (Brazil) to an unnamed destination through Liberia when they were busted and seized following tipoff from the United States Government.

Out of a total of 520kgs cocaine, 518kgs were burnt while 2kgs have been kept by the authorities here as ‘FOC’ (Fruit of the Crime).

At least five persons, including Portuguese Adulai Djibril, Brazilian Gustavo Henrique, Lebanese Issam Makki, Malam Conte of Guinea Bissau, and a Liberian Oliver Zayzay were arrested as alleged suspects in the smuggling operations, while the TRH Trading Corporation Company was alleged liable for bringing in the container, as the investigation continues.

Meanwhile, Rep. Kogar has vowed to push for the summoning of LDEA and NSA officials and authorities of the Ministry of Justice before the National Security Committee of the House of Representatives for inquiry. Editing by Jonathan Browne

NewDawn

The New Dawn is Liberia’s Truly Independent Newspaper Published by Searchlight Communications Inc. Established on November 16, 2009, with its first hard copy publication on January 22, 2010. The office is located on UN Drive in Monrovia Liberia. The New Dawn is bilingual (both English & French).
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