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Justice Minister, SG step aside

-In Senate Secretary’s trial

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Liberia’s Justice Minister Frank Musah Dean, his deputy Solicitor General Cllr. Saymah Syrenius Cephas and Montserrado County Attorney Cllr. Edwin K. Martin are recused from the economic sabotage trial of Senate Secretary Narbolor F. Singbeh based on the Justice Minister’s mandate sent to the Criminal Court “C” on 15 June.

Singbeh and several others have been indicted here for multiple charges for allegedly dubbing two Czech Republican brothers Pavel and Martin Miloschewsky of US$5,062,419.10 under the pretense of establishing a rock crushing company MHM Eko – Liberia in which the victims retained the largest share of 70 percent.

“We present our compliments and write to inform you that by directives of Cllr. Frank Musah Dean, Jr., Minister/Attorney General of Liberia, that he (Cllr. Dean), Cllrs. [Saymah] S. Cephus, Solicitor General of Liberia and Edwin K. Martin are recused from the above mention case,” the communicated addressed to the Clerk says. The Justice Ministry states in the communication dated 12 June that the recusal of the top prosecutors from the case is predicated upon the fact that these individuals represented the private prosecutor in private practice.

In the wake of their recusal, the Justice Ministry presents its Assistant Minister for Litigation Cllr. Wesseh A. Wesseh and Liberia National Bar Association president and retained lawyer of the private prosecutor Cllr. Tiawon S. Gongloe as counsels that will make representation for the government in the case.

The communication states that Cllr. Gongloe was given a Letter Patent by the Ministry of Justice for the trial of the case and other prosecuting attorneys of the ministry. An arrest order has been issued against Singbeh and the rest since 12 June, but court officers indicated Tuesday, 16 June that the defendant’s wife told them that her husband was allegedly in self – quarantine because he was not well, when they proceeded to arrest him at his Kesselly Boulevard residence.

The writ of arrest dated 12 June names other defendants as Othello Z.B. Karr, KarelSocher, Ales Sranmek, Sherman Longan, Jan Holask, Barry F. Tequah and OusmanFofana. Others include Gloria Cain, Sylvester Selvkpoh, Patrick SaahSiaphia, MulbahKenneh and Patrick Siaphe.

The defendants face charges of economic sabotage, theft of property, forgery and criminal conspiracy. The indictment accuses the defendants, along with former National Investment Commission (NIC) Executive Director George Wisner of allegedly conspiring to commit economic sabotage in violation of the Penal Law.

Prosecution claims that defendant Singbeh used his official position to conspire and connive with Gloria Caine, George Wisner, Othello Z.B. Karr, Prince A. Saysay and others to obtain faked and fraudulent “Investment Incentives” for duty free privileges.

The defendants allegedly obtained the faked “investment Incentives” for duty free privileges in spite of the fact that MHM Eko – Liberia was due to engage in crushed rocks and related businesses with US$7,616,152 capital investment.

According to the indictment, defendant Singbeh opened two bogus accounts in the name of MHM Eko-Liberia, conspired with KarelSochor, Ales Sramek, Peter Pesek, Jan Holaseh and Gloria Caine by convincing the Czech nationals to transfer US$2,495,109 and US$102,000,000 to pay custom duties on equipment imported, employees’ salaries and other running cost.

The indictment notes that the total value of properties including cash and equipment stolen directly from the Czech nationals by the defendants is estimated at about US$5,062,419.10. British national Hans Armstrong has been the Attorney-In-Fact of the two Czech brothers at the rock crushing company that was situated in Margibi County.

By Winston W. Parley

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