5:00 Former RUF commander Karmoh Kanneh: Taylor received diamonds from Tongo, promoted Sam Bockarie and Issa Sesay, and introduced Bockarie to Burkina Faso President Blaise Compoare to get ammunition for invasion of Freetown

2:30 (3:00 with the delay in video and audio): Court is back in session following the lunch break.

Prosecutor Julia Bailey continues to lead witness Karmoh Kanneh in evidence:

Pros: You told the court that your assignement was to clear up to Gofar. What did you mean to clear?

Wit: He said when we went there we should clear there of the enemy soldiers.

Pros: Did you do that?

Wit: Later the order changed. They said we should disregard.

Pros: What were you to disregard?

Wti: Sankoh said the mission should stop, we should just keep defensive.

Pros: For how long were you in ______?

Wit: Up to a year.

Pros: Where did you go from there?

Wit: I went to Peyama.

Pros: Did you receive a fresh assignment?

Wit: We joined our brothers to keep the defensive in Peyama.

Pros: Who were your brothers?

Wit: RUF. Sam Bockarie was in Peyama.

Pros: What was his role in Peyama at that point?

Wit: That’s where they sent him when he was demoted. He too was to keep the defensive. He was posted there as a battalion commander.

Pros: He’d been demoted? Why?

Wit: He killed a soldier without investigation.

Pros: What position had be been demoted from?

Wit: From Battlegroup Commander, a Colonel. They made him a Sergeant.

Pros; You met him in Peyama?

Wit: Yes, he was there first, but I got there the same month.

Pros: What was he doing in Peyama?

Wit: He was battalion commander. We were keeping defensive.

Pros: How long were you there?

Wit: Up to a month.

Pros: Where did you go?

Wit: To Kailahun, in Ngiema. I was with Bockarie again.

Pros: What year?

Wit: 1995.

Pros: You arrived in Ngiema in 1995?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: Do you know what month?

Wit: No.

Pros: You went with Bockarie?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: Was the first time you ever met Bockarie in Peyama?

Wit: No.

Pros: When did you first meet him?

Wit: After Phase II, I met Sam Bockarie. That was Zogoda. The two of us were in the same jail when he committed that crime.

Pros: What was Phase 2?

Wit: The first phase was 1991-1993. Starting from 1994 was phase 2.

Pros: What separated these two phases?

Wit: It was after the Liberians came and went.

Pros: You said you were detained in the same jail when he, Bockarie, committed that crime. What crime?

Wit: The soldier he killed in Sierra Rutile?

Pros: Why were you there?

Wit: I was charged with time factor. The leader called me and I did not arrive. I spent three days in jail.

Def: What did the witness mean by time factor?

Wit: When they call you and you arrive after 12:00 the next day, you’ll be disciplined for that.

Def: What was your position in Ngiema?

Wit: I went there as a crack force commander.

Pros: What was a crack force commander?

Wit: When the enemy wanted to infiltrate, you would go and join others. You hadn’t any permanent assignment.

Pros: What was Bockarie’s role?

Wit: The leader said we should join together to repel an enemy advance.

Pros: Who was the commander in the area?

Wit: Issa Sesay.

Pros: How long were you in Ngiema.

Wit: Up to the overthrow – when the AFRC overthrew the president of Sierra Leone.

Pros: When you were in Ngiema, did you have occasion to meet with Foday Sankoh?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: What was the nature of the meeting.

Wit: I met with Sankoh when he returned from peace talks in Abidjan.

Pros: Did others meet with him?

Wit: There were others there.

Pros: How many of you met with Sankoh?

Wit: He called for a formation. We all assembled.

Pros: Whatj occurred at this formation?

Wit: He addressed us and told us about the peace he signed. He said he’d done it for the movement. He said it did not mean the war had ended. He said times of peace were times we should prepare for war. He said we should not forget. By then the Kamajors had dislodged us from some areas, including Zogoda.

Pros: Did he say anything else?

Wit: I was given a new promotion as a captain. He promoted Gen. Bockarie – he gave him back his rank. At that point he was not a general.

Pros: What rank did he give him?

Wit: Colonel.

Pros: What happened after the formation?

Wit: He informed the senior officers to have all the officers to assemble at his place. Gen. Issa Sesay said we should meet there. All of us met there at the ground where he was staying, the EMG ground.

Pros: What is EMG?

Wit: I don’t know. It was where the leader stayed.

Pros: Who stayed there?

Wit: Foday Sankoh.

Pros: Was Foday Sankoh there when you assembled there?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: Who was present apart from yourself and Foday Sankoh?

Wit: Bockarie, Issa, Jungle, AB, FOC, Jackson Suaray, [others], I was there.

Pros: Did you know Jungle by any other name?

Wit: That is the name we knew.

Pros: What was AB’s full name?

Wit: It was Abu-Bakarr.

Pros: What was FOC’s full name?

Wit: I don’t know. That was the name I knew.

Pros: Had you ever seen Jungle before this meeting?

Wit: Yes, I had been seeing him.

Pros: Where?

Wit: I saw him in Liberia.

Pros: Did you know where he was from?

Wit: Liberia.

Pros: What was AB’s position?

Wit: There was a security branch called IO that reported to the leader. He headed that group.

Pros: What was FOC’s position?

Wit: One of Sankoh’s bodyguards.

Pros: And Jackson Suaray?

Wit: He was a bodyguard commander, leading all of the securities?

Pros: Who spoke at the meeting?

Wit: Foday Sankoh spoke. We saw him sand his satellite phone to Sam Bockarie.

Pros: Did he say anything when he handed the satellite phone to Bockarie?

Wit: He said we should take all orders from Bockarie. He said he was going on a tour of Libya. He said Bockarie would take instructions from Mr. Ghankay.

Pros: Who is Mr. Ghankay?

Wit: The NPFL leader, Charles Ghankay Taylor.

Pros: Did he say anything else?

Wit: He introduced Jungle to us as Mr. Taylor’s representative to us there.

Pros: Did he refer to Jungle in any particular way?

Wit: He said he was the Pa’s representative.

Pros: Did Jungle say anything at the meeting?

Wit: He too buttressed what the pa had said. He said he would do his best.

Pros: Was there anything else discussed at the meeting?

Wit: I think that is the most important thing we discussed.

Pros: Did Sankoh say where he was going?

Wit: Yes, to Libya.

Pros: What did you do after the meeting?

Wit: All of us went to our various areas.

Pros: You said you were in Ngiema until after the overthrow. Where did you go then?

Wit: We got an instruction from Sankoh. I moved with Bockarie, at first to Pendembu, then to Daru, then we came to Benguema.

Pros: Did you go anywhere after Benguema?

Wit: That is where we were based. In the mornings we went with Bockarie to Freetown and returned in the evenings.

Pros: Why did you go there, to Benguema?

Wit: That is where they lodged Bockarie. I was moving with him.

Pros: Who were those who called you?

Wit: It was the AFRC.

Pros: What would you do when you went to Freetown?

Wit: Sometimes we went to military headquarters at Cockerill. Bockarie had meetings with the most senior men, like Johnny Paul, Saj Musa and others.

Pros: Did you attend the meetings?

Wit: No, it was just for the council members.

Pros: Did you receive a different assignment while at Benguema?

Wit: Yes, I was assigned to Bintumani Hotel.

Pros: What were you assigned to do at Bintumani Hotel?

Wit: It was an important area. Gborie requested me from Bockarie. I kept security there.

Pros: Who was Gborie (ph)?

Wit: He was the first man who spoke on the BBC Worldwide after the overthrow. I heard him. HE said they had overthrown the SLPP regime.

Pros: Did you take up your position at Bintumani Hotel?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: How long were you there?

Wit: For a month.

Pros; What happened then?

Wit: Bockarie was given a mission, and he requested me from Gborie. Gborie handed me over to him.

Pros: What was the mission?

Wit: Johnny Paul said the road should be cleared of Kamajors from Bo to Kenema. I was to join Bockarie as one of the officers.

Pros: Did you commence that mission?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: What did you do?

Wit: We went along with Bockarie to Bo Town.

Pros: What did you do on your way to Bo Town?

Wit: There was no target on the way, so we drove and went.

Pros: Did you remain in Bo Town?

Wit: No. In the morning we went to a town where Sam Hinga Norman had held. They called it Telu Gbongor.

Pros: What was the purpose?

Wit: We were trying to find Norman.

Pros: Did you find Norman?

Wit: No, when we captured the place, we didn’t see him.

Pros; What did you do?

Wit: We returned to Bo Town in the evening.

Pros: Who were trying to find Norman apart from yourself?

Wit: Mr. Bockarie himself. All of us went.

Pros: What groups went?

Wit: The RUF.

Pros: Any other groups on the mission?

Wit: A few AFRCs were amongst us when we moved.

Pros: Did you remain in Bo Town after you returned in the evening?

Wit: We spent the night there. The next day Bockarie said to go attack Koribundu. We did that.

Pros: What was the purpose?

Wit: We were trying to divert the enemy’s attention from the Bo-Kenema Highway.

Pros: What did you do when you attacked Koribundu?

Wit: We captured there and returned to Bo in the evening. We captured some civilians and some Kamajors.

Pros; What did you do with the civilians?

Wit: We spoke to them. The Kamajors, we had to kill them.

Pros; What did you do, if anything, to the civilians?

Wit: We took property from them.

Pros: What do you mean?

Wit: We had rice, clothing, some other things. It was a battlefront. When you captured a place, anything there was yours.

Pros: Did you remain in Bo?

Wit: No, we went for the mission itself, to clear the Bo-Kenema Highway.

Pros: What did you clear it of?

Wit: We cleared the Kamajors who were there.

Pros: Where did you end up after you cleared the road?

Wit: Finally in the evening we entered Kenema.

Pros: What rank were you at the time?

Wit: Captain.

Pros: Did you remain in Kenema?

Wit: We were there for some time. Up to two weeks.

Pros: What happened after the two weeks.

Wit: We were waiting for ammunition. Our mission was to go all the way to Bo Waterside. Johnny Paul sent ammunition by helicopter and we received it in Kenema. Then we started to move towards Zimmi.

Pros: Was this the same clearing mission?

Wit: We finished clearing the Bo-Kenema road, but it was the same mission.

Pros: What did you do?

Wit: We assembled men and we moved on the mission. At first we went to Joru?

Pros: Did you remain there?

Wit: No, we went back to Zimmi. Then we went to Bo Waterside. We stopped there.

Pros: Did you receive a new assignment in Bo Waterside?

Wit: Yes. We left some men there, then went on a patrol with Bockarie to Wai and those villages. After three days we returned to Bo Waterside.

Pros; What did you do after you returned?

Wit: I went with Bockarie again to Kenema.

Pros; Where in Kenema?

Wit: He was based at NIC.

Pros: What was NIC?

Wit: It’s close to the Bank of Sierra Leone. I saw them calling it that, so we called it that too.

Pros: Did it have another name?

Wit: That was the only name I knew.

Pros: What did you do at NIC?

Wit: We were waiting for another mission.

Pros: Did you get another mission?

Wit: Yes, we had a mission to go and clear Tongo.

Pros: What do you mean clear?

Wit: It means dislodging your enemies.

Pros: Is Tongo the full name?

Wit: Tongo Field.

Pros; What district?

Wit: Kenema district.

Pros: What was your role to be in the mission?

Wit: I was the commander to head the mission.

Pros: Did you accomplish that mission?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: When you went to Tongo Field, did you remain there?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: How long?

Wit: I was there for a month.

Pros; What did you do during the month?

Wit; We were defending the area and mining for diamonds.

Pros: Who was doing the mining?

Wit: The civilians whilst we were securing and defending them.

Pros; What do you mean. What were you doing?

Wit: There were enemies there. You have to set up defenses.

Pros: What were you doing in relation to securing the civilians? How did you secure them?

Wit: We kept defenses to ensure that there was no shooting. There was no shooting from the enemy while I was there.

Pros: Were the civilians mining voluntarily?

Wit: They wouldn’t be willing.

Pros; So how did they come to do the mining if they were not willing.

Wit: If you have a gun, the civilian has no choice. They would always dance to our tunes.

Pros: After you captured Tongo Field, and you were the commander of that mission, did you speak to anyone about the fact that you accomplished the mission?

Wit: Yes, Mr. Bockarie?

Pros: What was said?

Wit: He thanked us a lot.

Pros: Were you thanked by anyone else?

Wit: Well, that was later. We received praises and thanks. That was at the time we were based there, when we told Mr. Taylor that we captured so and so. After we had based, we informed Johnny Paul and he thanked us. Later he informed Mr. Taylor.

Pros: How do you know that Johnny Paul informed Taylor?

Wit: It was Sam Bockarie that did this, it was later.

Pros; How do you know he did that?

Wit: It was through the satellite phone.

Pros: What happened with the satellite phone in relation to the accomplishment of the mission?

Wit: They communicated. The satellite phone was just between Bockarie and Taylor.

Pros: Did you hear Sam Bockarie talking on that phone to Taylor?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: What did he say?

Wit: That we captured the mining area. The pa thanked him a lot.

Pros; Who thanked who?

Wit: Pa Taylor.

Pros: When you say, we were close to him, what do you mean?

Wit: We were in Sam Bockarie’s room wehre the communication was going on.

Pros; Could you heard the voice on the other end of the phone?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: How?

Wit: They were not hiding things from me, so he told me he had been talking to Mr. Taylor. Jungle too was there.

Pros: What was Jungle doing there?

Wit: Jungle was always by the commanders. He was always with the top commanders as Taylor’s representative.

Pros: Did Jungle say or do anything in this room?

Wit: No, he did not speak.

Pros: You said civilians were doing the mining and were not doing it voluntarily. Did you ever see a civilian who did not wish to mine?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: What would happen?

Wit: It happened twice. They were flogged. They were forced to do the work.

Pros: Did you see it happen?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: How many times did you see it happen?

Wit: Twice.

Pros: Describe the first time.

Wit: When they came to do the work, they would come to the town to see which able civilian did not do the work. If the soldiers saw you, they would flog you.

Pros: Who would do the work?

Wit: The civilians did the work and the soldiers secured them.

Pros: How did they secure the civilians?

Wit: The soldier ensured the civilian do the work. Every day the civilians would do two days of mining for the government – the AFRC and RUF.

Pros: You said the civilians who did not want to mine would be flogged, and you saw it happen twice?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: What did you see the first time?

Wit: The soldiers whom we sent came to town and I saw them arrest a civilian.

Pros; Why was the civilian arrested?

Wit: He refused to go to work – diamond work.

Pros; What happened to him?

Wit: They beat him up. They used a cane.

Pros: How many of them beat him?

Wit: One person.

Pros: Where on his body?

Wit: They were beating him on his back, up to his buttocks. Later they took him to go and work. He worked.

Pros; What happened on the second occasion you saw?

Wit: It was for the same crime. He hid and he was discovered. The security discovered him.

Pros; Who did it?

Wit: It was not only one person.

Pros: What happened to the civilian?

Wit: He was beaten with the same cane. He was laid on the ground and beaten from his back up to his buttocks.

Pros: What happened after he was beaten?

Wit: He was taken to go and work.

Pros; You said civilians would mine for the government for two days?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: What do you mean by the government?

Wit: The AFRC and RUF.

Pros; Who was the commander in charge of Tongo Field?

Wit: Sam Bockarie.

Pros; Was there any commander in charge of the mining?

Wit: We handed it over to one man named Mopleh.

Pros: What group did he belong to?

Wit: They were between us and the civilians controlling the mining. He did not belong to a particular group.

Pros; You said the mining for the government was for two days. What about the other days?

Wit: It was free for all – soldiers and civilians.

Pros; Are you referring to days of the week?

Wit; Yes.

Pros: You said two days for the government and four days free. What about the seventh day?

Wit: There was no work.

Pros: What happened to diamonds on the two days?

Wit: If they found any diamonds they would just see it, but it was not meant for them. It was not even meant for us.

Pros: What happened to diamonds found on the days of free mining?

Wit: If it was big and we got the information, we would take it from you.

Pros: Did you see any diamonds found at Tongo Field at that time?

Wit: No.

Pros: Did you yourself ever have any involvement with diamonds in Tongo Field?

Wit: Yes. I was mining for myself.

Pros: Did you ever find any diamonds?

Wit: Yes, I used to get in bits. I was not fortunate to get a big one. I sold the bits I found.

Pros: When the diamonds were taken from civilians who found them, where were they taken to?

Wit: It was a government diamond.

Pros; Where would it go?

Wit: At that time the AFRC were the bosses, so we gave the diamonds from the civilians to the AFRC.

Pros: What would happen to the diamonds given to the AFRC?

Wit: We had somebody who kept the diamonds when it accumulated.

Pros: Were the diamonds taken to any particular place at Tongo Field?

Wit: They would show them to me. The onese for the AFRC, I will give to that person, Mopleh. I would take them to Mr. Bockarie and the person meant to keep them will keep them.

Pros: Who was the person you were to give it to?

Wit: Mopleh, the head of the mining.

Pros: What would Mopleh do with the diamonds?

Wit: At the end of the day, the man escaped with all diamonds.

Pros: Where did Mopleh escape to?

Wit: I don’t know.

Pros; How many diamonds did he have?

Wit: Over 1,000 pieces.

Pros: Did he leave Tongo Field?

Wit; Yes, we looked for him all over Sierra Leone, but did not find him.

Pros; Were there other diamonds found apart from those taken by Mopleh?

Wit: Yes, I was talking about AFRC diamonds.

Pros: What happened to RUF diamonds?

Wit: For two days, there was mining for the government. Diamonds from that gravel were taken to Bockarie. The first diamond we had, we took it to Sam Bockarie.

Pros; What did Bockarie do with the diamond?

Wit: He called me, JR, Jungle, Lion, [others] to his place in Tongo.

Pros; What was JR’s full name?

Wit: Junior Vandy.

Pros; What was his position?

Wit: He was Pa Sankoh’s bodyguard, and he sent him to Bockarie.

Pros: What happened when you went to this building in Tongo?

Wit: We showed the diamonds to Bockarie. We parceled the diamonds and the diamonds were taken to Liberia. We put them in a paper wit sello-tape.

Pros; Was there a diamond or more than one?

Wit; It was not one diamond.

Pros; What did you mean you checked the diamonds?

Wit: We parceled them and wrote the total on the paper.

Pros: What was the total?

Wit: The first was 43 diamonds.

Pros; What happened to the package?

Wit: Bockarie called Taylor and informed him. He too told him that we should hand them to Jungle, who would travel with them.

Pros; How did he talk to Mr. Taylor?

Wit: They spoke through a satellite phone.

Pros: Could you hear Taylor’s voice?

Wit: Yes, because a satellite phone is not like another phone.

Pros; Could you hear what Taylor said?

Wit: Yes. He thanked him a lot and told him to hand over the diamonds to Jungle to travel with it.

Pros: Did he hand it over?

Wit: Yes, when he handed it over, he gave the phone to Jungle and Jungle confirmed the total to Taylor. Taylor told him he should move with it to Liberia. Foya was always the station, where the helicopter would pick him up for Monrovia.

Pros: Did Jungle go?

Wit: Yes, Bockarie sent CO Lion to accompany him to Foya.

Pros: You said that Lion stopped there. Where?

Wit: Lion escorted Jungle to Foya, where the helicopter picked up Jungle to Monrovia. Lion returned to us in Tongo.

Pros: Was there ever another occasion when RUF diamonds were handed to Bockarie?

Wit: Yes, it happened twice in that month I was there.

Pros: Tell us about the second time. How many diamonds were involved?

Wit: By the time Jungle came back, we had 18 pieces. Among them was a big one.

Pros; What did you do with the 18 pieces?

Wit: It was the same procedure. The diamonds were shown to Bockarie. Bockarie would have a witness when he handed them over. We were there.

Pros: Did you do anything to those 18 diamonds?

Wit: Yes, we parceled it just like the first one and followed the same procedure.

Pros: Were there any calls made?

Wit: Yes, the same. Bockarie informed Taylor. He told him the total and Jungle confirmed it.

Pros: Could you hear the conversation?

Wit: Yes, all five of us were in the same place.

Pros; Who were the five?

Wit: I was there, Mosquito, Jungle, Lion, and Junior Vandy.

Pros; What happened after the call to Taylor?

Wit: They explained the same thing to him. He said they should give the parcel to Jungle. Taylor thanked Bockarie a lot and said he should keep it up.

Pros; Was the parcel given to Jungle?

Wit: Yes.

Pros; What did Jungle do with it?

Wit: He was given the same escort to the border.

Pros; Did Jungle return?

Wit: He came but did not meet us in Tongo. By the time he came back my assignment had changed.

Pros: What had your assignment changed to?

Wit: Bockarie and I were based in Kenema, at brigade headquarters.

Pros: Where were you based?

Wit: At first I was at Simbech. It was the same town, but we were not at the same place. Simbech is a section of Kenema Town.

Pros; What was your assignment there?

Wit: We were keeping defensive there. If he wanted military operations, Bockarie would contact me.

Pros; What rank were you?

Wit: Still a captain.

Pros: Were you contacted for military operations?

Wit: Yes.

Pros; What operations?

Wit: At one time, Kamajors came to Blama. We went there and put that situation under control.

Pros: Who contacted you for this operation?

Wit: Sam Bockarie.

Def: I’m losing track of the time here.

Pros: You told us you were in Tongo Field for about a month. What year was it when you left?

Wit: 1997.

Pros: When in 1997?

Wit: I cannot tell now.

Pros: You had gone to Freetown after the coup?

Wit; Yes.

Pros: After that, you found yourself in Tongo?

Wit: Yes.

Pros; So it was sometime after the coup and after you left Tongo that you found yourself in Kenema Town?

Wit: Yes. It was in the rainy season.

Pros: Were you in Kenema when the ECOMOG intervention took place?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: For how long had you been there when the intervention took place?

Wit: I was there 3-4 months before the intervention took place.

Pros; You were telling us about one mission you accomplished. Did you receive other missions while you were based there?

Wit: No, that’s where we were until the intervention.

Pros: Besides Bockarie, were there other commanders in Kenema while you were there?

Wit: Eddie Kanneh, the resident minister.

Pros: What do you mean, resident minister?

Wit: The AFRC representative in the region.

Pros: Were there other commanders in Kenema?

Wit: Captain Demo Musa was there as the OC Secretariat.

Pros: What was that?

Wit: It was the place where the problems of soldiers and civilians were looked into.

Pros: What group was he?

Wit: AFRC.

Pros: Other commanders?

Wit: The brigade commander, Colonel Fallah Sewa.

Pros: What group was Fallah Sewa with?

Wit: He was a soldier who belonged to that same brigade before the overthrow. He was one of the people who did not favor the coup.

Pros; How long did you remain in Kenema?

Wit: Until the intervention.

Pros: Apart from the mission you told us about, did you undertake other activities in Kenema?

Wti: I didn’t personally, but other things happened.

Pros: You were still a captain?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: As a captain, did you ever yourself do any training?

Wit: No, I was not involved in any training.

Pros; Why did you leave Kenema Town?

Wit: It was during the intervention that took place in Freetown. ECOMOG were advancing from Bo Waterside, coming towards Kenema. We went to Daru.

Pros: Was Bockarie with you?

Wit: All of us withdrew together.

Pros: Did you remain at Daru?

Wit: No, we were there for some time, then moved to Baima, seven miles from Daru.

Pros: Did you remain at Baima?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: What was your position at Baima?

Wit: At Baima, I was battalion commander and promoted to Leftenant Colonel. Sam Bockarie, the acting leader of the RUFP promoted me.

Pros: Why was he acting leader?

Wit: The leader was not present.

Pros: What was RUFP?

Wit: I’m sorry about the P. It was the RUF. The P later came, but at that time it was RUF.

Pros: Where was Sankoh at that time?

Wit: In detention.

Pros: How long did you stay in Baima?

Wit: I was in Baima just after the intervention, until the end of 1999.

Pros: Where was Bockarie based?

Wit: In Buedu.

Pros: How far is Baima from Buedu?

Wit: Over 40 miles.

Pros; At the time you were based in Baima and Bockarie was based in Buedu, did you have any occasion to visit him in Buedu?

Wit: Many times.

Pros: Did you ever meet with him?

Wit: Yes.

Pros; Where?

Wit: In Buedu Town itself.

Pros; Was there ever an occasion where you met with him and others?

Wit: Yes.

Pros: When was the first meeting held?

Wit: The first time I met with Bockarie or the first meeting we held?

Pros: The first meeting that you held. Who was at the meeting?

Wit: The first meeting we held was between Water Works and Buedu.

Pros: What kind of an area was that?

Wit: It’s on the Foya road.

Pros: What is the Water Works?

Wit: It’s a place that’s a kind of dam that pumped water to the town.

Pros: Why was the meeting held at this particular place?

Wit: At that time, there was serious fighting between us and ECOMOG and we were afraid of the air raid. We went to the thick forest there.

Pros: Who called the meeting?

Wit: Bockarie.

Pros: When did the meeting take place?

Wit: After the intervention that was in 1998.

Pros; How long after the intervention?

Wit: If my memory serves me well, it was around June, before Abacha died.

Pros; Who’s Abacha?

Wit: He was the president of Nigeria, who sent the Nigerians here.

Pros: What was the purpose of the meeting?

Wit: Bockarie called the meeting. There were so many reasons.

Pros: How many people were there?

Wit; Many because it was a general meeting for commanders and soldiers. We were over 600.

Pros: Of the commanders, how many were there?

Wit; There were many commanders.

Pros; What do you mean?

Wit: It means they were many, plenty.

Pros: What happened at the meeting?

Wit: Bockarie was just from Monrovia. He told us about his new promotion. He told us about the command structure between us and the AFRC. Johnny Paul was present. He explained about the role of Jungle. He told us about the Fitti Fata operation in Kono. He told us about his trip to Burkina Faso. He told us about the diamonds Issa took with him that were missing.

Pros: What did he say about his new promotion?

Wit: He went to Monrovia. We used to call him Col. Bockarie. He came with two promotions. He and Issa Sesay were now called general. He said it was Pa Taylor who gave them that promotion.

Pros; What did he tell you about the command structure?

Wit: He made clear to the AFRC men that AFRC was no longer in power. Everyone was supposed to be under RUF command. Anywhere where the AFRC had a commander, the RUF should serve as deputy.

Pros: Was that accepted at the meeting?

Wit: Yes, everyone accepted, up to the leader of the AFRC, and all of us that were there. Besides Saj Musa.

Pros; Was Saj Musa there?

Wit: No, but after the meeting a message was sent to the front lines.

Pros: What did Bockarie say about Jungle.

Wit; He made clear to Johnny Paul that this was the man who was Pa Taylor’s representative in the RUF territory. He wanted the AFRC group to understand that.

Pros: You said the Fitti Fata mission was discussed. What was said about that?

Wit: He said he wanted us to go clear the mining area in Kono. He said the Pa told him we should go capture the mining areas so we could get money from there for materials.

Pros: Who’s the Pa?

Wit; Mr. Charles Taylor.

Pros: You said Bockarie discussed travel to Burkina Faso with Gen. Ibrahim?

Wit: Yes.

Pros; What did he say about that?

Wit: He said Taylor told him that he would link him with Blaise Compoare, the president of Burkina Faso, and that General Ibrahim Bah would move with him to Burkina Faso. It was going to be in that same month. He went after the Fitti Fata mission.

Pros: You said Issa Sesay was discussed by Bockarie at the meeting?

Wit: Yes. He told us that he was sorry about what happened. He asked for forgiveness for Sesay for what he did when he took diamonds to Monrovia, and on the way they got missing.

Pros: Who asked for forgiveness?

Wit: Bockarie said Sesay asked for forgiveness. He said Taylor told us we should forgive him.

Pros; Did Bockarie say why Taylor wanted to introduce him to Burkina Faso?

Wit: It was for the mission to free the leader. We had to clear ECOMOG before we could get to Freetown.

Pros; When he referred to this mission to free the leader, what mission?

Wit; Operation Free The Leader. For the mission to capture Freetown and free the leader.

Pros: For how long did this meeting last?

Wit: It lasted for eight hours.

Pros; Did anyone apart from Bockarie speak at the meeting?

Wit: Yes. It was Bockarie who spoke more. Later Jungle spoke. He buttressed the introduction that Mr. Sam did toward the AFRC people. Johnny Paul spoke, and some other people too.

Pros: Were there high-level commanders at the meeting?

Wit: Yes. Sam Bockarie, Johnny Paul, Jungle, Issa Sesay, Eddie Kanneh, Gullit, I was there, AB, FOC, and some other commanders. I can’t recall all of their names now now. SYB Rogers was present.

Pros: Do you know SYB Rogers by any other name?

Wit: We called him Pa Rogers.

Pros: Did he belong to any particular group?

Wit: Yes, RUF.

Pros: Gullit?

Wit: Yes, he was there. Superman was there, Morris Kallon and Akim Turay were there.

Pros: Did you know Superman by any other name?

Wit: Yes. Dennis Mingo.

Judge Doherty: We have to adjourn now.

4:30 (5:00 with the delay in video and audio): Court adjourns. Proceedings will continue tomorrow morning at 9:30.