12:00 Court rejects prosecution application to discuss urgent matter in private session; cross-examination of former RUF radio operator continues

9:30 (10:00 with the delay in video and audio): Court is in session.

Prosecutor Brenda Hollis rises to request to make an urgent oral motion in private session and without presence of the witness. It relates to the confidential defense motion filed yesterday.

Defense counsel Morris Anyah: I’m in the court’s hands to determine whether to go into private session.

[Judges confer.]

Presiding Judge Teresa Doherty: We’ll deal in open court with whether it’s appropriate to make oral arguments.

Pros: We request this be done in closed session. It relates to confidential matters discussed related to the defense motion.

Judge Doherty: Mr. Anyah, we’re dealing solely now with whether this should be an oral argument.

Def: I don’t see why the chamber should reconsider these issues. The chamber made a ruling yesterday. The presumption is that motions should be undertaken in writing.

Judge Sebutinde: Ms. Hollis, you allude to the Chamber’s disposition yesterday. The trial chamber asked for oral responses yesterday on the presumption that written motions had already been filed. We did not entertain oral applications yesterday. Yesterday’s discussions were on the basis of written motions.

Pros: The motion itself was a written motion. We responded orally. This is a matter of urgency that follows directly from the defense’s application for an extension of time. We can file it within probably three hours, but this is a technical issue that should be overcome by the urgency and weight of the matter. The court did not decide this yesterday, as defense asserts. Defense is also on notice of exactly what this concerns because we sent an e-mail to the defense at 17:05 yesterday evening.

Def: I did not receive an e-mail yesterday because defense has had trouble accessing its UN e-mail accounts outside of the office. I will look now, here in the courtroom.

[Judges confer and review documents for about 10 minutes.]

Def: I wanted to correct the record about this e-mail. I recall clicking on it yesterday evening. I thought it was about the issues raised yesterday in court and not about a new issue.

Judge Doherty: We have considered the prosecution’s oral application under rule 73A. We refuse the current application.

Defense counsel Morris Anyah continues the cross-examination of protected prosecution witness TF1-516:

Def: When we left off yesterday, we were trying to ascertain whether Bockarie was present in Liberia when you were. You said that at some point he was in Liberia during your stay. When exactly was Bockarie there while you were there?

Wit: I think we’re talking about the city of Monrovia that we met.

Def: When did you meet him there?

Wit: In the year 2000. That was about December that I saw him in Monrovia at Benjamin Yeaten’s house. I had seen him in Lofa, but not Monrovia.

Def: Yeaten assigned you to Monrovia in December 1999?

Wit: I wasn’t assigned to Monrovia. I was with Yeaten. He gave me authority to stay in Monrovia.

Def: That’s when you lived in his compound?

Wit: Yes.

Def: What month was that?

Wit: I don’t know.

Def: Before the operation in Vahun where Bockarie joined the RUF?

Wit: Not Vahun.

Def: Kolahun and Voinjama?

Wit: After.

Def: From the month of December 1999, from when Bockarie crossed into Liberia, the first time you saw him in Monrovia was Dec. 2000?

Wit: Yes.

Def: He was your former commander and you worked under him in Sierra Leone for several months?

Wit: Yes.

Def: For up to a year?

Wit: Yes.

Def: At no time when he was in Liberia from December 1999 did you encounter him in Monrovia until December 2000?

Wit: No.

Def: No means what?

Wit: I only saw him and talked with him in 2000. I saw him in Kolahun and Voinjama before going to Liberia.

Def: I showed you a map of Monrovia two days ago. You said he lived in Monrovia. You’ve also testified about being in Monrovia frequently and spending nights in Yeaten’s compound. How is it that you do not see Bockarie for almost a year?

Wit: I was not all along staying in Monrovia. I moved with Fifty to Monrovia. When he went to Lofa, I went with him.

Def: You spent nights in Monrovia?

Wit: Yes.

Def: You’ve told us about other RUF commanders visiting Yeaten’s residence?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Is it your evidence that the first time you saw Bockarie there in December 2000?

Wit: Yes.

Def: How could you not have seen Bockarie?

Wit: I was not staying throughout in Monrovia. I can only talk about the time I saw him. I saw him at Yeaten’s place almost every day from the time I started spending a long time in Monrovia.

Def: You’re saying you saw Bockarie frequently in 2000 at Yeaten’s place?

Wit: Yes.

Def: All the times you saw him in 2000 were in December 2000?

Wit: The question is confusing.

Def; You saw him the first time in Monrovia in 2000 and you began seeing him frequently. So all the other times you saw him in 2000 were limited to December?

Wit; Not limited to December.

Judge Sebutinde: Were all these times confined to the month of December?

Wit: Yes.

Judge Sebutinde: That’s all we’re asking.

Def: Did you see him at all in Monrovia before December 2000 – anywhere in Monrovia, not just Yeaten’s place?

Wit: I cannot remember.

Def: You arrived in Liberia around June 1999?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Have you ever heard about the Lomé Peace Accord?

Wit: Yes.

Def; A peace agreement signed between the RUF and the government of Sierra Leone?

Wit: Yes.

Def: This court has ruled that it is a fact that on 7 July 1999 there was an agreement. Do you know if after you crossed into Liberia, whether Johnny Paul Koroma was ever in Liberia during the time you were there?

Wit: I cannot tell because I was in Lofa.

Def: Do you know whether between September and October, Koroma was in Liberia as a result of Lomé?

Wit: I cannot tell.

Def: It was in the latter part of 1999 that disputes between Bockarie and Sankoh began to arise?

Wit: Sometime in late 1999, yes.

Def: Have you ever heard of ECOWAS – the Economic Community of West African States?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Are you aware that in 1999-2000 there was a Committee of Five from ECOWAS and the heads of state tasked Taylor with resolving disputes in Sierra Leone?

Wit: I cannot recall that.

Def: Did you ever see Johnny Paul Koroma in Liberia?

Wit: At some point I heard he was making a trip, but I did not see him.

Def: When?

Wit: I think in 1999.

Def: The same year you got there and the same year as Lomé?

Wit: I can’t recall the month of the agreement, but I recall hearing Johnny Paul was coming with some RUF commanders.

Def: Are you aware that it was after this Committee of Five was established that the RUF guesthouse in Monrovia was opened?

Wit: I do not know.

Def: You were in the RUF and Sankoh was your leader?

Wit: Yes, but I was on the other side.

Def: Are you aware that Sankoh and Johnny Paul Koroma crossed together to Sierra Leone after Lomé?

Wit: I do not know.

Def: Do you know whether Sankoh entered Liberia after Lomé?

Wit: I can’t recall.

Def: You didn’t hear anything about it on the radio?

Wit: I can’t recall.

Def: Did you hear anything about Sankoh’s movements in 1999?

Wit: I heard he was released from Freetown to Buedu and they celebrated. After having spent some time in Abuja, Nigeria, he went to Freetown.

Def: Were you in Liberia when you received information that Sankoh was released from Abuja?

Wit: Yes.

Def: I was asking about Sankoh’s movements in 1999. As early as July 1998, Sankoh was already back in Sierra Leone.

Wit: In 1997 he was arrested in Nigeria and from that time until the time I went to Liberia, I knew he was not in direct command of the RUF but that he was in detention. Whether he was moved from one point to another was not in my knowledge.

Def: You said that when you were in Liberia, you were told that Sankoh had just made his way from Abuja to Sierra Leone.

Wit: I heard he had come to Buedu.

Def: You knew Sankoh was in Nigeria because you testified that Sankoh sent Martin Moinama with money to buy ammunition from ULIMO-K.

Wit: He was not in Nigeria then, but Côte d’Ivoire. It was Moinama who told me there was a pending trip to Nigeria.

Def: I recall your evidence now and you are correct. You’ve told us you monitored RUF radios. You said the only thing you recall about Sankoh’s movements in 1999 was about Sankoh’s arrival from Abuja.

Wit: From the time I learned he was arrested in Nigeria, I did not get information about him coming to the RUF territory. In 1999 I heard he had arrived in Buedu.

Def: Did you hear anything else about where Sankoh was in 1999?

Wit: That he was under detention.

Def: Where?

Wit: He went to Nigeria and was arrested.

Def: Would you agree that Sankoh was in Nigeria between 1997-1998?

Wit: I learned he was arrested in Nigeria and was to be brought back to be handed to the Sierra Leonean government. I don’t know when that was.

Def: You agree with this court that Sankoh was moved in July 1998?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Before July 1998 he was in Nigeria?

Wit: I only know he was arrested in Nigeria in 1997.

Def; You’ve said that in 1999 he was in custody in Nigeria?

Wit: Yes, he was arrested in Nigeria. There was no direct communication with Sankoh in Nigeria.

Def: What was Martin Moinama doing with Sankoh in Nigeria?

Wit: He went with Sankoh until his arrest.

Def: Memunatu Dean and Moinama were radio operators?

Wit: Yes. There was another girl called Matilda.

Def: Once Sankoh left Sierra Leone, everywhere he went he had a radio operator with him?

Wit: Yes. But when he was arrested, all radio communications ceased.

Def: But he came back to Sierra Leone in July 1998?

Wit: He was under custody.

Def; But he came back in July 1998?

Wit: I have learned that today.

Def: What else did you learn about Sankoh’s movements in 1999?

Prosecution: The question has been asked and answered.

Def: I have not had an answer.

Pros: The witness has answered as many times as the question has been asked.

Judge Doherty: I’ll allow the question.

Def: You have told us last week that even while with Yeaten, moving from Monrovia to the front lines, you were still able to listen to the RUF radio communications?

Wit: Yes.

Def: What, if anything, did you hear about Sankoh’s whereabouts once you crossed to Liberia in 1999?

Wit: All I knew was that he was under custody. He had no communication with the RUF. I only heard in 1999 that he had arrived in Buedu.

Def: Are you aware of the fact that after Lomé, Foday Sankoh arrived in Monrovia, spent an entire week there and met with various people including Johnny Paul Koroma.

Wit: I was not in Monrovia. I cannot tell.

Def: Are you aware of an elaborate ceremony in October 1999 in Monrovia when Sankoh and Koroma left for Freetown?

Wit: I cannot tell.

Def: Where were you in October 1999?

Wit: I was across Liberia on the front lines, including at a customs post near Guinea.

Def: You were near Guinea?

Wit: I was on the front lines when fighting was going on at Voinjama.

Def: You were on the front line. You were there with Yeaten. You still could monitor the radio sets?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Sankoh was still someone of stature within the RUF?

Wit: At that point I knew he was in custody.

Def: Was he somebody that members of the RUF respected?

Wit: He was in custody and somebody acted in capacity as leader.

Def: Was he somebody still respected by the RUF in 1999?

Wit: His leadership was still respected.

Def: That respect continued throughout 1999?

Wit: Yes.

Def: So while you were in the vicinity in Voinjama, you heard nothing about Sankoh?

Wit: I cannot really remember. I was really concentrating on the front lines. My life was at stake.

Def: Did you hear Yeaten say anything about Sankoh or Johnny Paul Koroma being in Monrovia in late 1999?

Wit: I cannot remember.

Def: Are you aware of the fact that this ceremony in October – Yeaten was present for the official ceremony in Monrovia?

Wit: I cannot remember that incident.

Def: You can’t remember going with him to Monrovia for that?

Wit: When we went to Monrovia, I was engaged in the radio room.

Def: October 1999: did Yeaten go to Monrovia?

Wit: I cannot remember.

Def: I put it to you that he was there in October for the ceremony.

Wit: That might be true. Because when we arrived in Monrovia, I was not taken to any conference. He was a big man.

Def: You’re now making a distinction between things you were present for and you heard about?

Wit: I have long made that distinction.

Def: Is it possible that Johnny Paul Koroma was in Monrovia in October 1999?

Wit: It is not to my knowledge.

Def: You went to the RUF guesthouse for the first time in 2000?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Where was it located?

Wit: [gives brief description]

Def: Let’s look at the map of Monrovia again. [distributes copies to the prosecution, judges and witness] Do you see where it says “Executive Mansion”? Do you see “Barclay Training Center”?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Please take that pen and circle where it says “Executive Mansion”. To the south-east we see the university. Then we see Tubman Blvd. Would you agree that Tubman Blvd, now known as UN Drive is the main thoroughfare through Monrovia. You see Congo Town. You go past the Guinean embassy… Where along this stretch would you say was the guesthouse of the RUF?

Wit: Which line? It says Tubman Avenue.

Def: Yes. You see the Sierra Leonean embassy?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Do you know where the RUF guesthouse was?

Wit: On this road, on the right side. [indicates on map] I used to walk there from Whiteflower. I met a number of people there [lists].

Def: It is near Nigeria House?

Wit: Yes, near there.

Def: Within a football field?

Wit: Not too far, not even up to a mile.

Def: Within a mile?

Wit: Not up to that distance.

Def: Was it as close as a football field?

Judge Doherty: Give a distance. Not all of us are football enthusiasts.

Wit: It was a waterlog area in front of the house.

Judge Doherty: We’re looking at the distance.

Def: If you were to walk from the Nigeria House to the RUF guesthouse, how long would it take?

Wit: Maybe 5-7 minutes.

Def: You told us that to walk from Whiteflower to where Bockarie lived, it was over 30 minutes?

Wit: I said about 30 minutes.

Def: What is the distance between the RUF guesthouse and the structure where Bockarie was staying?

Wit: You have to walk to Whiteflower, then you walk that distance I estimated yesterday to Bockarie’s place.

Def: What is the distance from the RUF guesthouse to Whiteflower?

Wit: When I used to go, I used to pay five dollars.

Def: To walk.

Wit: About 40 minutes.

Def: And another 30 minutes from Whiteflower to where Bockarie was staying?

Wit: Yes.

Def: So one hour and ten minutes for the entire distance from the guesthouse to where Bockarie was staying?

Wit: Yes.

Def: You’ve seen a photograph before shown to you by the prosecution that you claim to be the inside of the guesthouse?

Wit: Yes.

Def: [displays photograph of five individuals sitting in a room] Have you seen that photo before?

Wit: Yes.

Def: What is it?

Wit: I was asked to identify the people in the photo. This man is Usman Tolloh (ph), a radio operator of the RUF.

Def: He was in Monrovia at this time?

Wit: Yes.

Def; Who else do you recognize?

Wit: Rashid, a bodyguard to Foday Sankoh. He was permanently based in that guesthouse. This one we knew by the name of “Freedom” or “Ray”. This one was a bodyguard to Sankoh, and I have forgotten his name. This one I don’t know.

Def: Do you recognize anything else about the picture?

Wit: This wall resembles that guesthouse. I take it to be the dining room.

Def: Please label the individuals in the photo with a pen. [requests the judges to mark the document for identification] [photo is shown to Anyah, prosecution and judges]

Wit: I have now recalled the name of the slim fellow.

Def: What is it?

Wit: Jabbati.

[photo is given back to the witness for him to add that name]

Def: Who was Jabbati?

Wit: A bodyguard to Sankoh.

[judges order the photo marked for identification]

Def: [references a document] It says here that you were shown this same photo. “Witness was shown photo…and identified the individuals as Usman Tolloh, Rashid, and a bodyguard to Sankoh. He does not recognize the other two individuals. He recognizes the room as being in the RUF guesthouse.” This was six months ago, in October 2007. You did not say somebody named “Freedom” or “Ray” was pictured here?

Wit: I said it. But that I couldn’t remember his actual name.

Def: Why isn’t that in the notes?

Wit: I said it. I was not writing.

Def: So the prosecution did not write what you told them?

Wit: I said it was “Freedom” or “Ray”, but I do not know his actual name.

Def: That’s not on this page, so they didn’t write all that you told them?

Wit: It is not written here.

Def: You just gave us the name of another person, Jabbati.

Wit: I had to really think. I lived with him for some time.

Def: You lived with him? A few days ago you said you lived with Daf for a period?

Wit: Yes.

Def: You even told us that one of the prosecution exhibits was Daf’s notebook?

Wit: I said it was his handwriting.

Def: Did you live with anyone else in this photo?

Wit: Yes, “Freedom” or “Ray”.

Def: You lived with “Freedom” and Jabbati?

Wit: Freedom, Jabbati, Rashid, Usman Tolloh. I lived with Freedom in Zogoda.

Def: You lived with him?

Wit: We lived in the same camp in Zogoda until he went to Abidjan.

Def: From December 1994 to 1996 you lived with him? Who else?

Wit; I lived with Rashid in Zogoda also. I know him.

Def: Who else?

Wit: Usman Tolloh was one of the senior radio operators. He came from Western Jungle. He traveled with Mohamed Terawally to Malal Hills.

Def: I asked if you lived with him, in the same compound or house.

Judge Doherty: He said it was the same camp.

Def: We’ve discussed “Freedom” and you said you lived with him in Zogoda. You said you lived with him, Rashid, and Usman Tolloh.

Wit: We all lived together in a camp in Zogoda.

Def; Did you ever live with Jabbati?

Wit: Yes, also in Zogoda.

Def: So you lived with four out of the five persons pictured here?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Six months ago the prosecution showed you this photo. Is your memory better now?

Wit: I’ve been thinking.

Def: You couldn’t remember the names of the people you lived with?

Wit: It happens. I could not remember.

Def: I put to you that you were lying when you said that person’s name was Jabbati.

Wit: No.

Def: Why did the prosecution write that you did not recognize two of the five people?

Wit: I said I didn’t know one of them and couldn’t remember the other.

Def: At no time in October you said the name Jabbati. Do you agree?

Judge Doherty: I think he’s already answered that.

Def: You spent a lot of time with Yeaten in Liberia?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Yeaten was head of the SSS?

Wit: The director.

Def: Who was the deputy director of the SSS?

Wit: I cannot remember.

Def: Can you tell us the names of any SSS employees when you were with Benjamin Yeaten?

Wit: Yes. Njalah.

Def: male or female?

Wit: A male, Liberian. I cannot remember his rank. I used to see him move with Fifty. Sometimes back to Monrovia.

Def: Besides Njalah, who else do you know to have been an SSS member?

Wit: I cannot remember their names.

Def: Just one person? Have you heard the name Ernest Eastman?

Wit: I can’t recall.

Def: Who was Musa Cisse?

Wit: The man that Prude, the radio operator, was living with. He was a protocol officer for Taylor.

Def: Joe Montgomery?

Wit: No. I cannot remember.

Def: Was he Deputy Director of the SSS?

Wit: I cannot remember.

Def: Adolphus Taylor?

Wit: I cannot remember. There was one man called Peanut Butter.

Def: Adolphus Dolo, General Peanut Butter.

Wit: Peanut Butter used to come to Fifty in Vahun.

Def: What is the ATU?

Wit: Anti-Terrorist Unit.

Def: Was it operational in Liberia when you were there?

Wit: Yes.

Def: Who was head of the ATU?

Wit: “Bulldog” was head of the ATU.

Def: What was his real name?

Wit: Momoh Gibba, a Liberian. The first time we met he told me he was a Sierra Leonean. He said he came from a village near mine.

Def: What other names do you recall from the ATU?

Wit: I met Kamo Kai (ph), Baba Terawally, Jabati…

Def: The same Jabbati in the photo?

Wit: No.

Def: A Liberian?

Wit: They were all Sierra Leoneans. They crossed into Liberia with Bockarie and were trained for the ATU.

Def: Was Yeaten in charge of the ATU?

Wit: All the armed groups honored him on the front lines.

Def: Emmanuel George?

Wit: I cannot remember.

Def: Solomon Gray?

Wit: I cannot remember.

Def: Who did you report to in Liberia?

Wit: I was under the command of Yeaten.

Def: Did you ever receive orders from Issa Sesay?

Wit: Yes. I received messages from him and gave them to Yeaten.

Def: Did an RUF commander ever order you back to Sierra Leone?

Wit: I received a message from Fifty from Gen. Issa, that we were to meet at the Manowa Ferry. Indeed we traveled there.

Def: Was there ever a time that Bockarie or Sesay ordered you back to Sierra Leone?

Wit: No.

Def: How did you leave Liberia?

Wit: In Vahun, we’d come from Monrovia. There was news that they heard a Sierra Leonean voice communicating with the Kamajors on the net. I thought of the death of Superman and was afraid of being killed, so I thought it wise to leave.

Def: When?

Wit: Late in 2001.

Def: November?

Wit: Around that time.

Def: Without Yeaten’s consent?

Wit: Yes. But I called him when I was in Pendembu.

Def: You called him?

Wit: Yes. I returned to Buedu with other officers.

Def: You called Yeaten from Pendembu. Did you tell him you were not returning to Liberia?

Wit: No.

Def: Did he ask why you were there?

Wit: In Liberia, I used to travel to Sierra Leone a lot.

Def: Did he ask you why you were at Pendembu?

Wit: It was usual that I was in Sierra Leone. He did not ask me.

Def: If he was not going to be upset before you left, why didn’t you get his permission before he left?

Judge Doherty: Are you saying he knew how Yeaten would react?

Def: I’ll rephrase the question.

Judge Doherty: I just notice the time and that we need to adjourn for the mid-morning break.

Court is adjourning for the mid-morning break. The proceedings will resume at 12:00 (12:30 with the video and audio delay.)