2 Czech Investors Vent Anger over Liberian Judiciary in Singbeh's US$5M Case

Supreme Court of Liberia

Two Czech Republic investors who are pressing a US$5 million criminal case against the Secretary of the Liberian Senate, Nanborlor Singbeh and several other co-defendants, have broken silence for the first time, since  2020, when their case appeared before the Criminal Court ‘C’. 

Martin Miloschewsky and Pavel Miloschewsky said they are frustrated and disappointed about the Liberian judiciary’s handling of their US$5 million case against Singbeh.

The Miloschewsky brothers claimed that in 2013, up to and including 2016, they transferred the total US$5 million that is in both cash and mining equipment to Singbeh for investment purposes, and to establish a Czech Republic owned mining company the MHM Eko Liberia.

Unfortunately, according to them, the money and mining equipment was received by Singbeh who, with his (Singbeh’s) co-defendants including Ecobank and Afriland First Bank, siphoned the money, with Singbeh selling the mining equipment, which they are demanding the prosecution of Singbeh and several other co-defendants.

In a WhatsApp message dated Wednesday, May 4, to their Attorney-In-Fact, British national, Hans Armstrong, the Miloschewsky brothers said, “Absolutely there is no justice in Liberia, and even the lack of justice in Liberia is confirmed by the 2021 the US Department of State human rights report. 

“How will a judge who has recused himself from presiding over the case because of corruption, and he was complained to the Chief Justice, can be reassigned to the same court for the May 2022 Term of Court?” The Miloschewsky brothers, in their letter, made specific reference to Judge Blamo Dixon, who will on today, Monday May 9, replace Judge Ciapha Carey, as part of Chief Justice Francis Korkpor's judges rotational exercises.

“Is it that the Chief Justice himself is involved with the delay of our case? We are completely disappointed with the Liberian justice system,“ the Czech investors said, though making no decision about transferring their case outside of Liberia.

Judge Carey had already delivered a judgment into the case, by granting co-defendant Ecobank Liberia Limited their request to be tried separately from Singbeh and the other defendants, during the just ended March 2022 Term of Court.

However, with the end of the March 2022 Term of Court, Justice Korkpor decided to replace Carey with Dixon for the May 2022 Term of Court.

The chief justice by the new judicial law is the only member of the five justices that has the authority to assign and rotate circuit courts judges to courts throughout the country as he wishes.

Section 3.9 of the New Judicial Law titled: Assignment of judges to Circuits Courts: says, “Each Circuit Judge, except the judges commissioned as relieving judges, shall preside as resident judge over the Circuit Court of the circuit for which he was appointed. The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court shall assign, on a rotating system, a Circuit Judge to each quarterly session of the various circuits and if all business before a circuit court is disposed of before the expiration of a quarterly session, the Chief Justice shall have the power to reassign the Circuit Judge assigned thereto to sit for the balance of the quarterly session in any other circuit in addition to the Circuit Judge currently assigned there, if he deems such reassignment will aid the prompt disposition of judicial business.”

It can be recalled that on November 20, 2020, Judge Dixon recused himself from presiding over the Singbeh's case.

He was forced to step aside from the case due to alleged illegal and corrupt malpractices.

His recusal stemmed from a motion filed to the court by government lawyers.

In the motion titled: ‘Motion for Recusal, the prosecutors alleged that Judge Dixon had on multiple occasions been communicating with defendants Singbeh and Champman Logan, one of the defendants in the case, which prosecution argued undermines fair play and transparent justice.

Dixon”s assignment makes it difficult for him to hear the Singbeh's case, because he had recused himself from further hearing the matter. 

This means that the Czech investors will have to wait for the next term of court, the August 2022 Term, when maybe the Chief Justice would have replaced Dixon with another judge. 

Judge Dixon currently being complained before Chief Justice Korkpor and he is waiting to be invited by the Judiciary Inquiry Commission (JIC), an arm of the Supreme Court that is responsible to investigate unethical breached by judges, however, it is not clear whether the chief justice has forwarded the complaint before the JIC, before his assignment to preside over the court for the May 2022 Term of Court.

It can also be recalled that since 2019, the Singbeh's case has been lingering before the Criminal Court ‘C’ with the interference of several senior government officials to include the Senate Pro Tempora Albert Chie and the Solicitor General Counselor Saymah Syrenius Cephus.

Senator Chie, in 2020, was accused by Magistrate Victoria Duncan of the Kakata Magisterial Court in Margibi County, of preventing the court sheriff and some police officers, who accompanied her sheriff to enforce her arrest order for Singbeh,at his Capitol Hill office.

Because, Singbeh had refused to show up to her court, to answer to a criminal lawsuit that he allegedly sold some of the company mining equipment, in the county. That matter is still pending undecided before the Kakata Magisterial Court up to present.

Cephus for him, he almost collapsed the case, when he Indicted the Czech investors’ Attorney-In-fact, Armstrong, of theft, in the 8th Judicial Circuit Court in Nimba County, due to a counter complaint filed by Singbeh against Armstrong. Cephus knew very well that Singbeh was already indicted and his case was ongoing at the Criminal Court'C, where Cephus indicted Armstrong in Nimba County.

Based on Cephus’ indictment of Armstrong, Judge Ousman Feika, who was presiding over the Criminal Court ‘C’, at that time, in 2021, dismissed the Singbeh's indictment, but with a condition that the Armstrong case in Nimba County can be completed.

However, the government was able to dismiss Cephus' indictment of Armstrong, which action gives the go ahead for the re-indictment of Singbeh and his co-defendants this year.