The former general manager of Ducor Petroleum Incorporated, Mr. Amos Brosius, has been acquitted of over US$1.7million theft of property and economic sabotage in the case brought against him by the state.
Acquitting defendant Brosius, Judge Peter Gbenewelah of Criminal Court ‘C’ on Thursday, December 26, took more than five hours to come out with the not-guilty verdict.
The evidence, including the emotional testimony of Charles Carron, was not convincing enough to convict Brosius of the crimes, according to Judge Gbenewelah. Carron is the Chief Executive officer of Monrovia Oil Trading Company (MOTC) and 90% shareholder in Ducor Petroleum Incorporated.
The Criminal Judge asked for Brosius’ criminal appearance bond to be immediately given back to him.
He further ruled that the evidence produced by prosecution was not enough to convict the defendant of committing the crimes, noting that there were a lot of inconsistencies in the indictment prepared by the Grand Jury.
“Prosecution claimed that the defendant stole US$1,780,502.06, but in the indictment prepared by the grand jury, it alleged the he stole over US$4 million. What is that?” the Criminal Court Judge wondered.
“Even during the trial, prosecution failed to pray for an amendment of the indictment,” Judge Gbenewelah explained, justifying his verdict.
“Therefore, the defendant is not guilty of theft of property and economic sabotage,” Judge Gbenewelah openly announced in court.
Surprisingly, the prosecution team could not be found anywhere in the court room during the reading of the judge’s not-guilty verdict.
Flanked by his lead lawyer Cllr. Tiawon Gongloe with family and friends, who had been there with him throughout the trial, Brosius listened attentively as Judge Gbenewelah read the Court’s not-guilty judgment on charges of economic sabotage and theft of property.
He then broke down in tears as his family rejoiced in the courtroom.
Minutes after walking out of the courtroom, a “free man,” he told journalists “justice has prevailed and I am thankful that this Judge was able to give me that justice."
"This is something I deserve; especially since this is the company that I established with my own money, and I am able to finally get justice. I just wanted to clear my name from these crimes,” Brosius said in a joyous mood.
Brosius had taken the stand in his own defense and repeatedly denied doing anything wrong.
Brosius along with other defendants were indicted of stealing US$1,780,502.06 between 2006 and 2013,
They were said to have converted proceeds from the sale of petroleum products supplied by the Monrovia Trading Company (MOTC) to Ducor for supply to various vendors.
He was indicted for theft of property and economic sabotage. Under various schemes, Brosius was said to have connived with unnamed co-defendants] and transferred cash to Joy Station, a company he is said to own privately and was under his direct control.
He allegedly open a fictitious account at Ecobank-Liberia from which he made transfers and disbursements totaling US$1,780,502.06, converting same to his personal use, to the disadvantage of Ducor Petroleum.
The indictment said the action was in violation of Section 15.51 and Section 15.70 of the Penal Law of the Republic of Liberia.
Without the knowledge and approval of the Board of Ducor or the major shareholders of MOTC, Brosius allegedly opened an account at Ecobank, number a/c#0061014700164102, other than the legitimate Ducor Account at Ecobank numbered a/c#0061014700164101 to which he was a signatory.
Using the alleged account, he was accused of delivering various quantities of petroleum products value at US$159,660 destined for the Liberia Agriculture Company (LAC), a duty free customer that enjoys a 4 percent discount to undisclosed recipients, and that he did not account for the amount.
But, when the case started defendant Brosius’ legal team requested for separate trial, which was granted by the Court.
They also asked a bench trial (non-jury trial,” meaning that it is only the Judge that will hear and decide the case; and it was accepted.