In US$3.4M Case, Court Fine Amos Brosius’ Lawyers, But Lawyers Take Exception
The longstanding trial involving a Liberian businessman, Amos P.K. Brosius of the DUCOR Petroleum Incorporated (DPI) and the Monrovia Oil Trading Company (MOTC) owned by a Belgium businessman, Charles Carron and others at the Commercial Court of Liberia seems to be endless as the case continue to drags on,
At one of the contempt hearings held on March 19, 2018, involving two of Amos P.K. Brosius’ lawyers at the Commercial Court the three Judge Panel used the occasion to fine two of the lawyers US$200.00 each, for what the court described as defamatory remarks, false and misleading statement that their client made against the Commercial Court and the Judiciary in violation of the ethical standards applicable to lawyers in supervising their clients relative to matters pending before court especially in the said case mentioned above (i.e. MOTC Vs Amos Brosius).
The lawyers took exception to the decision of the Judges and further announced that they will take advantage of the law controlling such exception which the court granted. However, due to the fact that they were given a 24-hour period to pay the amount in question in the Liberian Government’s revenue.
Our source said the lawyers were constrained to pay the fine with the anticipation that the ruling would have been released anytime the Three Judge Panel deem fit to do so. In other words, it is a duty before complaint situation.
However, copies of the deposit slips presented to our reporter indicated that the fine imposed on the lawyers had paid.
During the trial of the contempt proceeding, it was observed that there were counter allegations of lawyers and judges in the administration of their professional duties.
Journalists who were on the scene also took keen interest in the matter and decided to do an in-depth investigation of the matter so that an informed reportage can be made on the issue.
At the trial of the lawyers, the Chief Judge of the Commercial Court, Chief Judge Eva Mappy Morgan read excerpts of a Bill of Information filed by Mr. Amos Brosius’ lawyers dated March 31, 2014 which indicated that “The informant requested the Court and Auditing Firm to please take into consideration the below listed points while conducting the Audit:” In the information that followed the quotation of the lawyers, the Brosius legal team informed the court and the auditor (to be commissioned) that MOTC had diverted funds belonging to Ducor in various bank accounts owned and operated by MOTC which included the following MOTC bank accounts:
According to them, from payments made by LAC for products delivered by Ducor: Diversions were made to MOTC Bank account #00221215913501 US$15.7M
From payments made by various customers to the order of Ducor for products delivered by Ducor diversions were made to MOTC bank account # 110-12-001471 as follows:
Christian Aid Ministries————–US$414,623.52
Salala Rubber Corporation———-US$451,673.30; this amount was diverted to MOTC bank accounts housed at various banks such as, Global Bank, Ecobank and LBDI.
As per the information contained in the Bill of Information from which the Chief Judge Morgan of the Commercial Court, based part of her reliance for the fine imposed on Brosius’ lawyers, according to sources, Mr. Brosius requested the Commercial Court and the PKF, the auditing firm selected by the Commercial Court to conduct the audit in the case MOTC vs Amos Brosius, to take into consideration for audit, that MOTC had diverted checks made payable to Ducor Petroleum, Inc. amounting to over US$19.9M to its various bank accounts.
During our investigation was further observed and made abundantly clear by the Chief Judge of the Commercial Court, that though thee Commercial Court was in receipt of said Bill of Information, no part of the 106 (One Hundred Six) pages of the PKF report showed that those diversions were ever audited. The bank statements of MOTC evidencing the diversions are in possession of this paper.
In a Rejoinder entitled “US$3.4M Backfires In MOTC Case” published in the Wednesday March 7, 2018 edition of the Front Page Africa Newspaper, it was stated that the withdrawals from the Ducor bank account which angered Mr. Brosius is that which was made from Ducor bank account #0221215153401 at the LBDI from 15 July 2013- Present.
According to source, Mr. Brosius believes that he was unjustly treated by the Commercial Court when the court allowed MOTC to take control of the disputed account, after it was agreed between the parties and the court that said account be frozen pending the determination of the case.
Our source further noted that considering the facts stated above, it requires no argument that what has left Brosius disappointed on the issue of the withdrawals of over US$3.5M from Ducor Petroleum, Inc. account no. 0221215153401 based on the order of Judge Eva Mappy Morgan dated 24 July 2013 has nothing to do with the diversion of funds in excess of over US$19.9M by MOTC as contained in the Bill of Information dated March 31, 2014 filed by lawyers of Amos P.K. Brosius.
Copies of documents evidencing the freezing of Ducor Bank Account no. 02215153401 on 15 July 2013 and its subsequent unfreezing on 24 July 2013 by Order of Judge Eva Mappy Morgan are in possession of this paper.
Because of the confusion that has raising on the issue of the alleged withdrawal of over US$3.5 million that have been withdrawn from the DUCOR account at LBDI, some Liberians who spoke to reporters expressed disappointment in what is obtaining from the Court, noting that the dispensation of justice seems to be taken the other way around, a situation been decried by many.