The absence of prosecution’s key witness, Rebecca Yeayee, to continue with her testimony against former Executive Protection Service (EPS) Deputy Director Darlington George charged with aggravated assault was enough for Judge Karboi Nuta of Criminal Court ‘B’ to mandate the state to produce Yeayee immediately.
Yeayee had already testified and was cross-examined by both the defense team and prosecution. It was now only left with Judge Nuta to question her on her testimony.
Her failure to appear prompted Judge Nuta to instruct state lawyers “to ensure the presence of its witness Yeayee on Tuesday, December 20, for continuation of her testimony; and they have to produce a medical certificate from the hospital where she has been allegedly treated causing her not to be present on three occasions.”
Nuta’s action came when George’s legal team asked him to compel prosecutors to ensure the witness’s unconditional appearance in court for the continuation of her testimony.
Before the action by the state witness, prosecution had argued that although Yeayee was still on the stand waiting to be questioned by Nuta, she communicated to them about her illness, which they claimed could not allow her to attend the scheduled hearing on December 20.
They argued that Yeayee’s unfavorable health condition was not an attempt to delay the trial, because they have been cooperating with the court.
Up to present, prosecution has not been able to convince witness Yeayee to appear in court.
In their counter argument, the defense team said the action of state lawyers to withhold one of their key witnesses was a complete mockery of justice and the profession.
They further said that because of Yeayee’s alleged illness, prosecution has deliberately refused to produce other witnesses to continue with the trial.
“This is with the understanding that their witness would come at any time to clarify the mind of this court; and if the witness continues to remain ill for the next four months, would the court wait for her recovery?” the defense team asked. “The court has to order the state to produce other witnesses and to make sure that Yeayee appears with a medical report from where she is allegedly being treated.”
George is accused of brutalizing a lady identified as Esther Glain at the Barnersville sports pitch outside Monrovia on September 15, 2015, an allegation he has denied.
He is also charged along with one James Tamba, another EPS officer, who was then assigned to Vice President Joseph N. Boakai.
Charges facing the two ex-presidential guards range from criminal attempt to commit murder and aggravated assault.