TMZ: Welcome to Issues in the Press. We have Charles Taylor Junior on the line. Mr. Taylor are you there, sir?
Charles Taylor, Jr.: Yes sir, good afternoon to all listeners. Good afternoon to you Mr. Al Jerome.
TMZ: Thank you very much. Could you just state your name?
Charles Taylor, Jr.: Again, I am Charles Taylor, Jr., otherwise known as “Chucky”, which I would prefer not being called. But yes, this is uh, this is me calling from Federal Prison USP Big Sandy in Kentucky.
TMZ: Thank you very much, Mr. Taylor. You have been indicted and are in jail for rape and torture all that. What do you have to say to the people of Liberia listening right now?
Charles Taylor, Jr.: Well, that’s actually the reason why I’ve called; one of the reasons why I’ve made myself available for this interview. You know over the next couple of months I plan on addressing this unlawful nature of my conviction, an illegal conviction. Let me be pristinely clear about the allegations that I’m making and will be making in the months to come. I’m stating that Justice Department officials and other federal executive employees involved in the first torture case in US history, conspired to violate my civil and constitutional rights:
- By producing false statements in violation of 18 USC 1001 in Department of Justice Documents i.e. prosecution memorandum, case initiation report and supporting affidavits, regarding a case that they clearly lacked probable cause to initiate.
- I will be saying and clearly asserting, prosecutors lacked the same probable cause when they sought and procured an illegal indictment in violation of my due process rights.
- Due Process violation continued in my trial as the government failed to prove the jurisdictional part of the statute under 18 USC2348(b) regarding count 1 of the indictment, as it relates to 18 USC 2348… conspiracy to commit torture.
TMZ: Okay, Charles?
Charles Taylor, Jr.: Well, let me finish, Al… which is the heart of the indictment, making me legally and factually innocent. There was fraud via misrepresentation throughout the jury instruction; essentially, the jury issued an advisory opinion, and at present, the judge lacked the sentencing authority under rule 32 under Federal Rules and Procedure, as relates to the PSI as… judicial facts. At present, the DOD is conducting an illegal certification of my JFC file and other critical source documents in violation of 4001(a); 18 USC4001(a), 18 USC4042, and—
TMZ: Ok Charles, um… sir, I just want to stop you right there. You will continue, but I just want to stop you in your tracks. The first thing I want to address here right now before we go to that and, like I said, I promised our people that we will continue to grant you access on the air and continue to speak. So for time to come, you know, Charles will be speaking on this our TMZ Radio exclusively with us, and we’re going to have an opportunity to listen to your problem.
Now the first thing here is, Charles, the people of Liberia are listening to you. Do you have anything to say to the people who are in tears: your loved ones who are worried that you are in jail and those who think that you’ve hurt them? Do you have anything to say to them as they listen now?
Charles Taylor, Jr.: Well clearly, and here’s the reason why I stressed on the fact that there’s only 15 minutes. Because I intend on addressing this illegal conviction, it is very important that I now begin to address the myths in the form of mistruths that have taken place with regards to the comments made about me and others closely associated to me.
With that being said, I’ve made it my business over the years to apologize not only to family and friends. And this interview I wanted to use as an opportunity as well, to first clearly apologize to my mother, my father whom I would say three words to: Now I understand. To my children, my son Charles, my daughter Jordan, my son Darren Taylor who’s in Liberia right now; my brothers and my sisters; my fellow partisans, my comrades and fellow Liberian citizens: I am sorry if I have done anything to offend anyone. I apologize if I have at any point in time created the perception that what has been said about me is true, I apologize.
This has been an exercise of humbleness and I am thankful to have been placed in this environment. What may surprise many is that I have transcended the suffering and I have found wisdom within it. But more importantly, it has stressed the need to be humble. To say sorry is a sign of strength, this is not a weakness. To have compassion is a projection of strength and it is an exercise that I will continue to fully engulf myself in. So as I say again: to my family, to my children, to my partisans, comrades and Liberian citizens, I am sorry for all that I have done or they have perceived that I have done. But it is now time for me to reclaim my name, not only for my children but for those who know me well, which are a very small number.
TMZ: Okay, Charles Taylor Junior making his apology to the people of Liberia. Let me ask this question. I know it takes a lot of time and strength and endurance to actually reexamine your life – you know—while in prison, to readjust yourself. What is it we’re hearing now; are you now a Muslim?
Charles Taylor, Jr.: Yes. Yes I profess [the faith of the Prophet Mohammed]. Yes I am and I have been for many years.
TMZ: When you were convicted you were given the opportunity to apologize to the people for any wrongdoing. I understand when the judge asked you to apologize—
Charles Taylor, Jr.: I can’t year you too well, please repeat the question.
TMZ: During the time of your conviction, were you given the opportunity to apologize and did you refuse or did you apologize?
Charles Taylor, Jr.: Are you referring to my trial?
Charles Taylor, Jr.: Well, a trial consists of facts, okay. At that time, I was a layman, ignorant to the law and I relied on wise council of my public defenders now that I know which was ill advice. Had I known then now what I know, I would have testified and I would have directed and been greater involved in regards to my defense. So no, I did not testify during trial but those issues would have been irrelevant in the eyes of the fact finders. So ultimately, the jury is supposed to consider the allegations based upon fact and what I had initially said before I was rudely interrupted – no offense – is that they issued an advisory opinion, what is considered to be a hypothetical judgment. And that basically means that the prosecutors failed to advance or prove the allegations as they had declared them in the indictment, which was illegal as they lacked probable cause.
So there is a legal term called actual and factual innocence and I meet that criteria presently at this stage. And I have presently brought this to the attention of the Attorney General, Mr. Derrick Holden, and have filed several complaints with the office of the Inspector General and I am asking now for certain congressional representatives as well senators to initiate a congressional investigation regarding this case because I firmly believe that this prosecution was motivated by political reasons – it was not grounded in law or fact. So I’m also asserting now today – live on the air – that I believe that there were foreign factors involved in encouraging my prosecution; foreign influence in regards to a domestic prosecution of a United States citizen.
Those are very real allegations and ones to be taken seriously. And I will continue to ask for the support of the rule of law by Congress – congressional representatives as well as senators that I have written , one primarily being the congressional representative of District D of Florida, Representative Corrine Brown, who I have sent all my legal information to. I am not making countless story allegations; they can be supported by facts. In fact, if given the opportunity, I will send these documents out for them to be posted live on the Internet for the world to see. It is clear that this indictment was motivated by politics. And clear crimes were committed in order to initiate that.
TMZ: Okay, so if you say there were foreign powers trying to actually propel your prosecution, do you care to say what were those powers and why were they interested in making sure that you are behind bars?
Charles Taylor, Jr.: Well look, this is not intended to be an inflammatory—
(phone shuts off, interview ends.)