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Crime & PunishmentGeneralLiberia news

In Singbeh others trial: Court suspense hearing

The Criminal Court “C” at the Temple of Justice in Monrovia has suspended the trial of Senate Secretary Nanborlor F. Singbeh Sr., and former National Investment Commission (NIC) boss George W. Wisner and several others, pending the issuance of a regular notice of assignment.

Presiding Criminal Court “C,” Judge Ousman F. Feika said Tuesday, 17 August 20212 that the case was being suspended because the prosecution failed to properly serve the defendants in the case.

The other defendants including Alex Saramek, Karel Socher, Sylvester Selevkpoh, Barry F. Tequah, and Patruick Siaphie have not been served with the indictment, issued a writ of arrest, and brought under the jurisdiction of the court.

“I have also observed that the counsels for Co-defendants Afriland Bank, Cllr. Darku Mulbah, and Ecobank, Cllr. Albert Sims was not served with the Notice of Assignment upon which today’s hearing is being held,” the Judge noted.

He further noted the trial can only be assigned provided the prosecution will do the needful to guarantee a speedy trial for the defendants who are presently before the court.

“Wherefore, and in view of the foregoing, the trial of these proceedings is hereby suspended pending the issuance of a regular notice of assignment, provided that the prosecution will do the needful to guarantee speedy trial for the defendants who are present before the court. And it’s hereby so ordered.” The judge said

The accused are standing trial for alleged economic sabotage, theft of property and criminal conspiracy.

Judge Feika emphasized that the proceedings cannot be continued as in keeping with the requirement and provision of the Criminal Procedure Code.

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In his ruling, he added that it’s a cardinal requirement under the Criminal Procedure Law here that defendants who have been indicted be served with indictment along with a writ of arrest to bring them under the jurisdiction of the court.

Defendant Singbeh and the complainant Hans Armstrong who is backed by Justice Minister Musa Dean are locked up in a legal battle over the rightful ownership of two yellow machines.

The machines include one caterpillar excavator with model 325 DNL valued at USD120, 000.00 and one Atlas Copco Jackhammer valued at USD 225, 000, 00, belonging to the MHM EKO Liberia Inc. The equipment in question is currently being rented by ArcelorMittal Liberia.

In the wake of the legal battle between Singbeh and Justice Minister Dean’s longtime client Armstrong, this paper reported Tuesday, 17 August over leaked audio in its possession which purports to be the voice of Assistant Justice Minister for Litigation, Cllr. Wesseh A. Wesseh soliciting payment of US200.00 dollars from Armstrong in the same case.

The audio which dates back to February 2021, suggests that the US$200.00 was to pay members of a Special Grand Jury.

The Company MHM EKO Liberia Inc. was organized in May 2013 and registered as a legal entity in June 2013. Six months after its registration, Singbeh was joined by two foreign partners-Pavel Miloschewsky and Martin Miloschewsky. Singbeh served as President and CEO before the current controversy ensued.

However, some lawyers representing a party in the case informed the court that the prosecution is in receipt of a motion for severance or separate trial filed on behalf of the Co-defendant Jan Holask.

They, however, asked the court to deny, reject and dismiss the motion for severance or separate trial.

They also argued that co-defendant Jan Holassk is not hostile to the defense of the others co-defendants, noting that when the court grants severance from the rest of the co-defendants, the Republic of Liberia will be prejudiced.

However, the court said Co-defendants Ousman Fofana, Patrick Saah Siapiah, Ecobank Liberia Limited, and Afriland bank were also being served with the indictment and the writ of arrest and brought under the jurisdiction of the court.

But the defense counsel said Ousman Fofana, Patrick Saah Siapiah, Ecobank Liberia Limited, and Afriland bank were not in court because notice of assignment for Tuesday’s hearing was not served on them.

These development come at the time the prosecution has repeatedly argued that the defendants had been failing to attend court proceedings.https://thenewdawnliberia.com/senate-secretary-several-ordered-arrested/

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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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