Prosecution Wants Appeal Of Ivorian ‘Mercenaries’ Denied

Prosecutors in the case involving eight Ivorian nationals accused of mercenary activities have requested the Supreme Court to deny the appeal by defense counsels for their release from prison.

The defendants, whose names were not disclosed, were indicted on August 13, 2012 by a 12-member jury of the Criminal Court “C” at the Temple of Justice for alleged rape, theft of property and mercenarism, among others, according to the Liberia News Agency.

The defense team, headed by Cllr. Tiawon Gongole, had filed an appeal on June 17, 2014 for the release of the eight alleged Ivoirian mercenaries, arguing that their issue was political.

The Solicitor-General of Liberia, Cllr. Betty Lamin Blamo, told the Supreme Court recently that the eight men should not be released without being prosecuted for the alleged multiple criminal offenses, including murder.

Blamo also argued that government took exception to Magistrate Nelson Chineh’s decision to acquit the Ivoirians on the basis that she did not except to the appeal of denial filed by the defense counsels.

She continued that government has, however, maintained the conviction that once relevant issues of proceedings were not finalized by the court, the state still had remedy at the law.

Blamo noted that government did not appeal the decision to deny the appeal for the release of the Ivoirians because the key issues were not determined by the Magistrate.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court of Liberia has reserved ruling pending the issuance of notice of assignment.


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