One of 13 persons on trial for staging mercenary activities in neighboring La Côte d’Ivoire on Thursday, May 22 denied any involvement.
Testifying at Criminal Court ‘D’ defense’s team 12th witness, Isaac Taryon, who has become partly blinded in the eye told the court that “I did not fight any of the wars in Liberia, so why should they accuse me of fighting in La Côte d’Ivoire.”
“I don’t know anything about war. Ask any of the warring factions’ heads whether they know me of being part of their groups,” the defense witness furthered. “I’m just a mere farmer, who is a victim just because I am a member of the Krahn tribe.”
According to him, during the war in Liberia, he fled and sought refuge in La Côte d’Ivoire, but later returned and resided in Zwedru, Grand Gedeh County.
Narrating about his arrest and subsequent indictment, Taryon told the jury that on July 12, 2012, at about 8 p.m., he drove some Ivorians on his motorbike to the PTP’s refugee camp.
“When we got to the camp, it was around 8 p.m. and the security at the gate prevented us from entering,” defendant Taryon alleged.
“They told us that they were advised by their bosses that nobody should enter the camp after that hour, because state security was arresting people who they claimed fought in La Côte d’Ivoire.”
He said, after he was stopped from entering the PTP’s refugee camp he decided to go to a nearby shop to have some drinks.
“When I entered the shop, I saw lot of Ivorian refuges there so I decided to offer them some drinks (alcohol). It was while we were drinking, my friends yelled and said the security officers are coming let us run from them,” he stated.
“I told them that I was not going anywhere because I was not one of those they were in searching for.”
“But, when they arrived at the shop without asking me any questions, they arrested me and charged me of being a rebel. I am not a rebel and I never fought any war,” defendant Taryon protested his arrest.
The case continues…