Contrary to Aylmer Johnson’s denial that he had ever been investigated by the Liberia National Police (LNP) about the disappearance of US$7,400 from the Liberia Scrap Association’s account at Liberian Bank for Development and Investment (LBDI), a letter written by one of his lawyers,
Cllr. Joseph P. Gibson of Wright and Associates Law Firm has established that he withdrew the money without being authorized to do so.
Johnson is the son of former Internal Affairs Minister Abdullah B. Johnson.
The letter dated April 25, 2016 was addressed to Commissioner Joseph B. Flomo, director of Intelligence, Liberia National Police (LNP), who was then investigating the criminality involved in the withdrawal of the money.
However, a press release on August 16, 2016 claimed that “at no time was Mr. Johnson, who was elected transparently in August 2013 as president of the Liberia Scrap Association, charged with any offense consistent with the association’s constitution, and neither has there been any investigation held as alleged by the group making the allegation.”
Cllr. Gibson’s letter read, “… we have implicit confidence and high respect for the LNP, and will do nothing to bring that institution to disrepute in whatsoever manner and form.
“We submit…that the complainants, Mohammed Keita and Hassan Bass, … were very much aware of the fact that the account was turned over to Mr. Johnson, after the announcement of the appeal in open court, and the final judgment was delivered by the Trial Court, of which, they failed, neglected and refused to inform the court to that effect.”
“Most importantly,” the letter noted, “We did not deny making the withdrawal; on the contrary, we owned up to the fact that the withdrawal was made by us, which leaves noting to be investigated.”
The letter added, “We take the behavior of Col. Flomo as harassment and intimidation and an outright disregard for the rule of law.”
Mohammed Keita, who heads the aggrieved members of the association, in an interview with journalists on Saturday, lamented the behavior of the LNP not to process Johnson for criminal prosecution.
“They have concluded with the investigation, yet Johnson has not be sent to court for us to begin with the criminal trial,” Keita said, adding, “we have written several letters to Inspector General Col. Chris Massaquoi about the delay to send us to court, yet he has not addressed our concern.”
One of Keita’s letters dated May 25, 2016 to Col. Massaquoi reads,” We bring to your attention the investigation by Col. Joseph Flomo and the unjust delay in forwarding the matter to the court.
“Johnson has been charged for theft, impersonation and fraud by the LNP without any attempts to give us, members of the association a day in court.
“We wrote you on February 29, 2016, complaining about the behavior of Johnson and the disappearance of US$7,400.”
Therefore, the letter added,” We will appreciate were you to use your good offices to bring the accused, Johnson to court, as we are ready to aid the prosecution in recovering our money and affecting justice and fair play.”
Besides, another letter dated April 16, 2016 under the signature of Judge Emery S. Paye, then presiding judge of the Civil Law Court addressed to Col. Flomo reads,” it is observed from the records that the Clerk of the Civil Law Court, Madam Ellen Hall, issued an order turning over the
Scrap Association’s properties to Johnson.”
The letter added, “When this claimed my attention, I ordered the Clerk to revoke her order of October 20, 2014, and she did. Whether she served the order of revocation on Mr. Johnson, she will say it. So, you may proceed to conduct an investigation of the matter.”
“Despite those communications from the association’s aggrieved members, the LNP continues to protect Johnson from prosecution,” Keita said in tears.