LOFA LIBERIA: In Lofa, 10th Judicial Circuit Court Grants Motion to Dismiss Six Statutory Rape Cases

By Tokpa Tarnue- tarnue82@gmail.com

VOINJAMA, The 10th Judicial Circuit Court in Voinjama Lofa County on Tuesday November 30, 2021 dismissed six rape & statutory rape cases.

The decision by the court follows a motion to dismiss the cases by the defendants through the defiance team.

The defiance team in the motion to dismiss the cases pray the court that release the detainees from further detention on grounds that they had stay in detention over the statutory period without the state being able to draw up an indictment against the defendants.

Those released are 20 years old Tarnue Diggen of Voinjama with statutory rape, Smith Kessellee age 35 of Voinjama also with statutory rape and Foday Kanned age 40 of Vahun who was charged for rape.

Others are, 24 years old Fallah Gaseme of Foya charged with rape, 57 years old James D. Smith also of Foya charged with rape, invasion of privacy and simple assault while 26 years old Fayia Morlu of Foya was in detention for alleged statutory rape.

The six suspects upon their release from the Voinjama central prison by the court were seen in a jubilant mood while returning to their respective destinations to reunite with their families after stating for several months with some even spending up to a year.

Responding to the judge final ruling, attorney Anthony kollie of the defense team in the county said the ruling was in keeping with the law and haled the court for what he term as the right decision.

He said keeping suspects behind bars without indictment for trial is a complete violation of their rights and a major factor for most of the over-crowdedness not just at the Voinjama central prison but also other prisons across the country.

Efforts to speak to government precutting lawyer Crll. Luther J. Sumo who is the county attorney did not materialized as he chose not to speak to the issue.

Meanwhile, several human rights actors and non-governmental organizations in the county fighting to combat all forms of violence against women and girls have described the situation as not just a set back to their efforts but also a loss to the government as well.

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