A private businessman Francis Fody has accused several unidentified personnel of the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL) of allegedly brutalizing him on the orders of a businesswoman, and raiding his shop of some L$172,270 plus US$4,450 at the VP Road, Old Road Community on Sunday, July 14.
The victim told the NewDawn Newspaper on Wednesday at the Zone 3 Police Depot that the matter was being investigated by the Liberia National Police (LNP) after he and three other victims were dragged to the National Police Headquarters on Sunday by the AFL Officers in their jeep.
But when contacted, the Police Zone 3 Commander only identified as Officer Hallie, referred this paper to Police Spokesman Sam Collins, who also referred this Reporter to authorities of the Ministry of National Defense to ascertain the identities of the accused army personnel.
As to the whereabouts of the accused, Sam also said investigation was ongoing. Notwithstanding, Assistant Defense Minister for Public Affairs David Dahn said the case on hand was a civil matter, thus the Police have the responsibility to deal with it and not the Defense Ministry, saying he had no knowledge of the case.
Dahn said the Defense Ministry could have only helped in the process had the names of the accused been unveiled. On Sunday, July 14, Fody said while standing at his shop, a lady identified as Oldlady Beh, wife of businessman Charles Beh, came with her jeep accompanied by some boys and stopped in front of the the shop.
He alleged that the lady told one of her boys to go and buy some drinks in his (Fody’s) shop. He said the buyer was carrying lot of his bottles into Oldlady’s car, opposed to his rules that no one should take along with them his bottles.
“He said he paid for the bottles; so I told him lets go inside to confirm it and the lady opened the jeep and he put the bottles inside. I told him again that he was carrying my bottles. While asking him to come into the shop to confirm whether he had paid for the bottles, he shoved (to push) me and then people started to laugh at me; he took out one bottle and burst it,” said Fody.
But following the scuffle with the alleged boy, Fody said the lady pleaded with him that she would return his bottles, which he accepted. To his surprise, Fody said an hour later while sitting at his shop, he saw the same lady coming back with two jeeps occupied with lots of army people.
“I walked to them, and they asked me are you the Fody, I said yes; that’s how they pushed me and carried me and put me into the car because they said the lady told them that people gave her all kinds of talks,” he lamented.
Fody narrated that the AFL personnel locked him up in their car over 30 minutes, while Oldlady Beh took the other officers into his shop.
“Armed men were manning me in the jeep. They started carrying on destruction there. The children helped me call the Police from Zone three. When Police went there, the army took lot of things from my shop,” Fody further alleged.
He claimed that the AFL personnel took all the money he made that night. “What they took from my personal saving was $4,450USD plus $20,000LD. They also carried $92,575 from the first bar, and the second bar they carried $59, 695,” he said. However, he said the lady is not in the military, but is said to have some cash or influence.
“They beat me in the car. They took me to central, but central referred them to Zone 3,” he concluded.