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Crime & PunishmentLiberia news

Monrovia: Prosecutor, Judge tussle over British national

By Lincoln G. Peters 

The Temple of Justice in Monrovia was a scene of drama when Assistant Justice Minister for Litigation Cllr. Wesseh A. Wesseh resisted Civil Law Court “B” Judge Scheaplor Dunbar’s order for British national Hans Armstrong to be immediately accompanied by Civil Law Court officers.

The drama occurred to the disbelief of many after Mr. Armstrong appeared as one of the State witnesses before jurors at Criminal Court “C” to testify in the US$5million economic sabotage case involving Senate Secretary Nanborlor F. Singbeh.

While Armstrong was siting along with other State witnesses, the Civil Law Court officers appeared on the scene.

Suddenly one of the officers pulled out an order issued by Judge Dunbar, demanding that Armstrong follows the officers immediately.

But that order was resisted by Assistant Minister Wesseh, a key State lawyer prosecuting the alleged economic sabotage case in which Armstrong had appeared to testify as State witness.

Minister Wesseh argued that Armstrong was a State witness and could not be arrested while under the control of the government.

Following a long argument between the court officers and Minister Wesseh, the officers left without taking Armstrong along with them.

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However after Armstrong completed his testimony at Criminal Court “C,” Assistant Minister Wesseh surrendered the British national to the Civil Law Court.

Unfortunately, during Armstrong’s appearance before Judge Dunbar at the Civil Law Court, he had no lawyer to represent him there.

Judge Dunbar did not make an inquiry about Armstrong’s lawyer and in an angry mood, the judge instructed the court officers to send Armstrong to prison, an order the court officers executed immediately.

Before Judge Dunbar’s decision, Armstrong had written two separate communications to Chief Justice Francis S. Korkpor expressing disappointment in the judge’s handling of a non – contested divorce case that involved the British national and his estranged wife Karen R. Clarke – Armstrong.

During the hearing of the case that is believed to be a civil matter, Judge Dunbar, initially arrested Armstrong on ground that he had refused to pay US$6,000 as counsel fees to his estranged wife’s lawyer, Counselor G. Wrefurd Sayeh.

It was based on the alleged decision that Armstrong complained Judge Dunbar to Chief Justice Korkpor.

Judge Dunbar was on October 25, 2021 accused by the British national through the complaint, alleging ethical transgression while presiding over his (Hans’) and his estranged wife’s non – contested divorce case.

Further, Armstrong on 21 December 2021 wrote a follow -up letter of complaint to Chief Justice Korkpor, bringing to his attention, the alleged behavior of Judge Dunbar, who had allegedly demanded the payment of the counsel’s fees.

The complaint against Judge Dunbar was triggered when he reportedly chose to enforce the early judgment of his predecessor Judge Yamie Quiqui Gbeisaye, who had demanded that Armstrong pay unto his estranged wife’s lawyer Cllr. Sayeh, the amount of US$6,000 before he could proceed further with the case.

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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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