Sable Mining Case ‘Suspended’ for Elections

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The Supreme Court yesterday did not give any assurance that it will mandate Criminal Court ‘C’  to resume jurisdiction over the Sable Mining alleged US$950,000 bribery case involving several past and present public officials, including former House Speaker Alex Tyler of Bomi County.

The court, meanwhile, informed both the defense and prosecution that its present focus is on cases that may arise from elections-related irregularities during the conduct of the October 10 presidential and legislative elections, instead of criminal cases such as the Sable Mining case.

“We are going to concentrate on cases that would come from the ongoing electoral process for now, but not criminal matters,” the court said yesterday.

Yesterday’s argument into the Sable Mining case resulted from a petition for a Writ of Certiorari filed against then Criminal Court ‘C’ Judge Yamie Quiqui Gbeisay’s stance not to accept prosecution’s request to have the controversial emails and spreadsheets marked permanently to be included in their oral and documentary evidences.

A Writ of Certiorari is an order a higher court issues to review the decisions and proceedings of a lower court to determine if there were any irregularities.

In his stance, Judge Gbeisay declared that the spreadsheets and emails will be marked temporarily pending the arrival of Heine van Niekerk, who is the major participant in the alleged email exchanges, and is listed by the prosecution as one of its witnesses.

Gbeisay’s judgment was “on the question of conversation referred in the emails between defendant Varney Sherman (Bomi County Senator) and Klaus Piprik with regards to codefendant Alex Tyler, former Speaker of the House of Representatives, demanding a payment of US$250,000 making reference to Tyler, a third party, in his absence as a true hearsay. But, said statement may be admitted into evidence, not necessarily for its truthfulness, but for the fact that such statement was made.”

Before yesterday’s hearing, prosecution was without two of its lead lawyers: Cllr. Theophilus Gould, who died earlier this year; and Cllr. J. Fonati Koffa, head of the Presidential Taskforce and Minister of State without Portfolio who resigned his posts to vie for a representative seat in Grand Kru County.

In their argument, lead prosecution lawyer Daku Mulbah, County Attorney for Montserrado County, noted that Judge Gbeisay, without the defendants providing any evidence that the emails and spreadsheets presented by them as evidence were obtained through hacking or mere hearsay, ruled setting the coming of Heine van Niekerk, who gave the instruments to the prosecution, to testify in court as the precondition for the admission of the instruments into evidence.

Cllr. Mulbah further argued that the emails and spreadsheets were voluntarily given by Heine van Niekerk, Sable Mining executive for West Africa, to the Government of Liberia’s investigating team.

Co-defendant Sherman allegedly had the series of email exchanges with van Niekerk.

Author

  • Anthony Kokoi is a young Liberian sports writer who has an ever-growing passion for the development of the game of football (soccer) and other sports. For the past few years, he has been passionately engaged in reporting the developments of the game in the country. He is an associate member of the Sports Writers Association of Liberia (SWAL). He is a promoter of young talents. He also writes match reports and makes an analysis of Liberian Football.

2 COMMENTS

  1. CASE, IN REALITY CLOSED! HERE IS WHY:

    (1) The primary duty of a court, or a public prosecution, is not to convict, but to see that justice is
    done!!!

    (2) the realization that Justice Banks erred by giving the FALSE impression that it is a forgone
    conclusion, there is absolutely no possibility of the evidence allegedly collected
    from the prosecuting witness or the key material witness Heine van Nierkerk could be fake
    or forged documents hacked into the defendant´s email box; hence must be
    marked permanently;

    (3) the very strange and totally unconstitutional denial of a defendant´s right to confrontation and cross-
    examination (Article 21 h of the Liberian Constitution) of the key Prosecuting
    Witness (Heine van Nierkerk),

    (4) the strange reassignment of the judge!!!

    (5) the seeming inadvertent disregard of a Judge´s rights and powers to exclude evidence,
    on the one hand, and,

    (6) the prosecution´s failure to acknowledge its
    duty and obligation to disclose information and facts (surprisingly supported by
    Justice Philip Banks) are highly reprehensible vis a vis the doctrines of equality before the law, and due process, within the realm of litigation! For:

    (7) WHETHER IN A CRIMINAL OR CIVIL LITIGATION, NO ONE SHOULD EVER BE CONVICTED, OR HELD LIABLE, ON HEAR SAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BUT RATHER ON PROOF BEYOND ALL REASONABLE DOUBTS, AND OVERWHELMING EVIDENCE!!!

  2. Well, that is the legal reality as to why the case is “suspended.” But the factual REALITY, when it comes to why the abrupt “suspension”, is not necessarily because of any election. It is because, the chief ochestratorś objectiveś have been met.

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