2:30-4:30 session (Half hour tape delay) court is in session. This does not represent a verbatim transcript of the trial.
Def: You were recruited into Black Kadafah in Bomi Hills?
Wit: Yes, that is where we took the plan.
Def: Do you know King Perry Komarah?
Def: Did you ever see him, during the time you were in black Kadafah?
Def: Did you ever go to Kakatar when you were in Black Kadafah?
Def: Where did you go when you were with Black Kadafah, how long were you a member of Black Kadafah?
Wit: It was just from Bomi Hills to Monrovia, we were coming to Sierra Leone and return.
Def: What happened when you returned to Sierra Leone?
Wit: We were able to gain grounds in Sierra Leone.
Def: What happened to Black Kadafah when you returned?
Wit: We the RUF, we left them and came and based, it was for us to get ground, we came and based.
Def: When “we got grounds” in Sierra Leone?
Def: How long were you a member?
Wit: 6-7 months time. 6 months we were able to do constant operations.
Def: And the geographical area is from Bomi Hills to the border of Sierra Leone?
Wit: Yes. AT the time I was there/
Def: How many people were in Black Kadafah?
Wit: 250 member
Def: Were you all involved in the same operations during those 6-7 months?
Def: So you don’t separate into smaller groups?
Wit:Yes. It was one unit at the time I was there.
Def: Black Kadafah was made up of NPFL Liberians?
Wit: Both NPFL and RUF
Def: But mainly NPFL?
Wit: Well, they were headed by NPFL but majority was RUF.
Def: Do you know what happened to the NPFL leaders after you left the group?
Wit: No. Because at that time we had left.
Def: Did you hear later what happened to Dry pepper, Pelly Boy and Devon?
Wit: I only learned in 1994 when I heard they had been killed.
Def: Black Kadafah set up secretly by NPFL members to try to take power from Mr. Taylor. Were you aware?
Def: It was created by others to destroy him, were you aware?
Def: Your purpose in making an area fearful was to make sure that civilians were kept out of the way of RUF operations, right?
Def: So that there wouldn’t be civilians between you and the Sierra Leone army?
Wit: At that time.
Def: Generally, you basically created a situation where civilians would be afraid of being in the area?
Def: You are captured in 1991, when do you first hold rank in the RUF?
Def: And that rank was captain?
Wit: No. Lieutenant
Def: What were your duties?
Wit: They gave me the rank and made me the company commander
Def: Would you have to look at maps from time to time?
Wit: Except if it was foreign, the leader would put down the map and talk about it to us.
Def: Were you able to follow when maps were put down?
Def: You can read maps?
Def: How could follow when the map was put down and explained?
Wit: Just like a backboard, you just repeat, you follow it.
Def: Are you saying you could never read maps?
Def: Could you read maps sometimes?
Wit: No. I’ve never read a map on my own.
Def: What was your rank next?
Def: Where were you then?
Def: When was your next promotion?
Def: What you were promoted to?
Wit: Lieutenant Colonel.
Def: Are you sure it was 1998?
Def: Was there anything in that year you can link your promotion to?
Wit: The ECOMOG took place, I got the rank and assignment.
Def: next promotion?
Wit: Year 2000
Def: What to?
Def: Can you link that title to any event?
Wit: The problem that ensued in Freetown at the time UNUMSOL was arrested, when I run away to Punembu.
Def; Are you sure?
Def: were you promoted above Colonel?
Def: Ever promoted to battalion commander?
Def: Was that above colonel?
Wit: Well, rank and assignment, that is an assignment not a promotion.
Def: Look at Tab 2 page 30684: [reading]-“witness states due to his performance leading attacks he was promoted to lieutenant colonel after peace accord”
Def: Why would they write that down?
Wit:I can’t remember to tell you any reason.
Def: We know that this interview was read back to you, can you remember that being read back, and you being forced to correct error?
Wit: well, when I’m speaking and writing it down with a pen, when they are transferring it the mistake occurred?
Def: What do you been by transferring?
Wit: When they take statement they write with a pen, afterwards they read everything to me, maybe mistake occurred when they put it in another ink.
Def: What does other ink have to do with writing down something you never told them?
Wit: this is not what I said.
def: what does color of ink have to do with this?
Wit: The statement.
Def: They read the statement back to you?
Def: Do you remember having them read this back?
Wit: They read it to me. But the time is what the difference is. It is not after Abigan peace, I do not dispute all that you just read.
Def: Did you tell them you got it wrong?
Wit: Well, I’m only seeing it here now. That is why I can recall. At the time, I did not get it as you put it now. It was not after Abigan.
Def: Did you correct them when they read this?
Wit: I said they read it to me but I don’t think that is how the reading went.
Def: So they read one thing and typed another?
Wit: That particular statement was not authored by me.
Def: reading on, who promoted you to Lieutenant colonel?
Wit: Sam Bockarie
Def: He was promoted to this rank by Foday Sankoh himself, did you tell them that?
Def: Did you correct them?
Wit: That is what I said. The way you read this here, I’m not sure that is how they read it then?
Def: I’ve been through the hand written account and there is one error on a completely different subject which you corrected, recently this year. And none of this is corrected, this is all accurate typed account of handwritten notes. Do you follow?
Wit: I did not have it written properly.
Def: It is more likely than not that they wrote this down because you told this to the investigators?
Wit: That particular, I can’t recall I said that, for that kind of rank.
Def: Before the lunch break you said you always answer the question you are asked, you have just gone off the question, do you think it is more likely than not that these words are written this way because this is what you told the prosecutors?
Wit: I don’t think so.
Def: Witness was still based at Gaima during this period?
Wit: Yeah, I was based in Geyaima in 1996.
Def: They have that right?
Def: Witness states he was promoted to Battalion commander in 1996, he was then made to base with his own group of fighters?
Wit: No. At that time we are not in the area, so could not have been sent to Baima?
Def: You were given an opportunity to correct it?
Wit: No. That is not what I said.
Def: There is a lot wrong with these few lines?
Wit: That is the first thing I have seen, I will tell you again.
Def: I’m not going to read it again, do you agree that most of what I read, they have got wrong according to your evidencein court today?
Wit: No. Sometimes they wrote it in the best way, but I assume they have mistakes.
Def: Have you ever used the expression of promoted?
Def: Why did you tell us that being made battalion commander is not a promotion?
Wit: It is an assignment, a promotion is an official rank.
Def: now you say it is not a promotion?
Wit: I was promoted Lieutenant Colonel, I was given an assignment of battalion commander.
Def: Were you promoted to Battalion commander in 1996 and then made to base at baima with your own fighters?
Wit: I was promoted in 1996.
Def: Were you in Baima in 1996?
Def: So they have the next sentence wrong as well?
Wit: It is the same thing, it is wrong.
Judge: When were you assigned Battalion Commander?
Wit: 1998 after the intervention.
Judge: Was that after Lieutenant colonel?
Wit: yes, after the intervention.
Def: Where were you based?
Wit: After assignment I was in Baima.
Def: Was this interview gone through with you in April of this year?
Wit: I think so.
Def: i want to ask about diamond mining, When did you first become aware of the RUF involvement in diamonds?
Wit: 1997, that is when I knew.
Def: What did you learn in 1997?
Wit: When we captured Tango, mining started there for the RUF.
Def: Were you involved in any way?
Wit: Yes, because I was a commander at the place.
def: Did you supervise the mining?
Wit: Not supervising, I was commander on the ground, so I was fully involved.
Def: did you tell prosecution that you were the supervisor for Tongo fields?
Wit: I had not said that.
Def: Who was the leader of the RUF after you took Tongo fields?
Wit: Sam Bockarie was acting as a leader.
Def: It is right to say that during his period, mining wasn’t very organized?
Def: It was until Issa Sesay took over that RUF became more organized about the mining?
Wit: during Mosquito’s time.
Def: When did Sesay’s time as leader beging?
Wit: In the year 2000.
Def: You never took diamonds to Liberia?
Def: Did you hear diamonds were being taken from Sierra Leone to Liberia?
Def: Most of those diamonds were seized from civilians rather than were mined?
Wit: They were mining and seizing diamonds from civilians.
Def: Most of the diamonds taken to Liberian during Bockarie were seized?
Wit: No, during Issa’s time they were taken diamonds
def: Most of diamonds during Bockarie period were seized?
Def: No, it is wrong?
Wit: There were not diamonds taken from civilians at check points.
Def: Tab 2: [reading] Did you tell the prosecutors in March 2007, “witness states that during period of Sam mining was not much organized”
Def: goes on “most of the diamonds were those seized from civilians at check points”?
Def: So when they read that back to you, did you say that is wrong?
Wit: No. It’s only that you read it today that my attention is drawn to it.
Def: I was at pains when I started to question you to establish that every time you were interviewed the notes were read back to you so you could correct what they wrote down, and you agreed, so today is not the first time it is read to you?
Wit: Yes. When they write it down they read it to me.
Def: And I checked all lines of hand written notes and this is an accurate record, which they read back to you, understand?
Def: If they read it back to you, why didn’t you correct them?
Wit: At that time, I didn’t get it clearly like I’m getting it today. Otherwise I would have made amendments before today.
Def: you made one amendment recently, and it’s not in this part of the interview. When the material is being read back to you it is being translated?
Def: And you agree that you understand English even if you can’t read it?
Def: You said you were taught in English and you said you could read and write.
Wit: I did not say I could read and write English.
Def: That is what you told us this morning.
Def: You have been around English speakers to be able to follow when someone speaks in English?
Wit: No. That level I stopped at, I can’t make follow-ups.
Def: You were having this all translated, for you to amend, change, or add to, and you didn’t change that did you?
Wit: Well, maybe for some areas, the one I understood I did make amendments, they are human.
Def: Was Diamond mining taking place anywhere else When Sam Bockarie was leader, where?
Wit: Tongo and Gaima
Def: Can you turn to Tab 3: page 00044374-interview 31 October 2007, investigator is Steven Streeter with an interpreter, on the second page, par. 11 read “he then went to Kenema and was assigned as commander for offensive of Tongo, and was assigned supervising mining for Tongo fields, and left prior to black December…” Did you tell the prosecutor you went to Kenema and then you were assigned as commander against offensive at Tongo?
Def: After AFRC coup, “he then went to Kenema and was assigned as as leader in offensive against Tongo”
Def: “And was assigned supervising mining at Tongo fields”?
Def: WItness says “he left prior to Black December…”did you point out that they made a mistake?
Wit: No. I did not become a mining supervisor, I became a commander on the ground.
Def: You are not answering the question I asked. Did you tell them at the end that where they wrote that you were assigned supervising mining that they got that wrong?
Def: You told them?
Wit: No. I was not the supervisor so I couldn’t tell them.
Def: Did you point out to them that you hadn’t said that?
Wit: Not at that moment.
Def: I accept that when you were taken through this again a few weeks ago you did correct that error?
Wit: No, I did not correct it.
Def: on 14/15 April this was read back to you and you asked them to remove the words “upon the successful takeover of Tongo you were assigned suprvisor”?
Wit: To remove it?
Def: Do you remember they took you line by line to make corrections?
Wit: Yeah, they told me that.
Def: Did you tell them on 14th or 15th of April, I should not be recorded as saying supervisor or mining Tongo fields?
Wit: No. Had I made it they would have made the correction.
Def: Tab 5: 100492: Corrections to previous statements and on the second page, corrections to statement 31 October 2007, the third correct down, “upon successful takeover assigned supervisor…” should be deleted. Witness supplied the following corrections. You made correction?
Wit: Yes Sir.
Def: You gave them the wrong information in the first place at the end of October?
Wit: It may not be wrong information.
Def: I will move on. Your journey to Monrovia for arms and ammunition: How many trips did you make to Monrovia?
Wit: Two trips.
Def: And each time how did you get there?
Wit: I went by helicopter.
Def: This is the helicopter flown by two white men who were Ukrainians?
Def: On both occasions?
Wit: Same helicopter.
Def: Answer the question.
Wit: Same two Ukrainians.
Def: Tab 1 page 28355: First interview with the prosecution Feb 28, 2007, on the second page first par. is this what you said? “he did three trips to Monrovia all by helicopter for arms, the arms were loaded in the helicopter for the return flights”
Def: So that is another mistake they’ve made?
Def: This interview was read back, did you point out the mistake?
Def: This is a much shorter interview, why didn’t you correct this error?
Wit: I am unable to give a reason why I didn’t correct it. If i got it the way I got it here, but I didn’t.
Def: What is there not to get about this simple sentence?
Wit: It happens, as long as I’m human, it happens.
Def: There have been a number of serious mistakes in what has been written down by the interviewers when talking to the prosecutors?
Wit: There are mistakes but not many.
Def: It doesn’t matter how many there are, but you did not correct one single mistake when interview notes were read back to you?
Wit: There were some that I corrected.
Def: Which ones did you correct?
Wit: You have the paper, there are areas I corrected, I don’t have the paper, so I can’t tell you where I made mistakes, I have not finished reading everything.
def: Were you given the interviews to read?
Def: So what do you mean, I have not finished reading everything?
Wit: There are areas that I corrected.
Def: Even though you made some corrections, it would appear that at teh time these interviews were read back to you, you never corrected one single mistake?
Def: No I did not correct one mistake?
Wit: I corrected it.
Def: You haven’t shown us any you corrected at the time? Are there other mistakes you corrected that are in the typed notes?
Wit: There were areas that had mistakes, so I did some corrections.
Def: Let’s see if there is error on the previous page, half way down the firstpage, 28355, [read] “they got new armaments from the Liberians, he was sent to Kailahun and promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and then to battalion Commander ” did you say that?
Def: They got the three trips wrong?
Wit: In Liberia it is not wrong, in Monrovia it is wrong
Def: Tab 2: 30685: Last Paragraph on this page, but to put in context, Witness states the first shipment he was involved with waswhen he went with Sam Bockarie….you describe helicopter, did you tell the prosecutor this: “believes that helicopter came from Monrovia to Foya, since that was witnesses first time going for shipment.”
Def: He cant remember who was on board who brought the arms
Wit: yes. If I cant remember those in helicopter…repeat area
Def: He cant remember who was on board?
DEf: So they’ve got that wrong?
Def: Did you correct them?
Wit: No. I couldn’t remember all of them.
Def: Tab 4: 47087: [reading] “with respect to the first shipment…the witness offered clarification, you tell them more details: this shipment took place after you arrived in Buedu in March 1998, and before meeting at the waterwork?
Def: When do you say the meeting at the Waterworks was?
Wit: After death of Abatra [?]
def: June 1998, how long after the death?
Wit: Water works meeting we did the Fitifata mission, when was this? I can’t know the particular date.
Def: You go on to give more detail about that detail, witness was present when helicopter landed “Liberian military helicopter painted camouflage
Def: Bockarie told witness it was from Monrovia?
Def: When asked if Jungle was involved, witness stated Jungle was on the helicopter.
Def: Was Jungle on that helicopter on that firstshipment?
Wit: He was not there.
Def: Another error, writing your account?
Def: Another one you didn’t correct.
Def: I want to suggest to you that nowhere in all of these notes have you said that these men were Ukrainians?
Problem with Video….
Def: Have you spokenwith other people about evidence in this case involving Ukrainians?
Wit: People like?
Wit: Except during interviews, not a day did I discuss with anybody else.
Def: Have you been speaking to any other people about evidence in this case with Ukrainians involved in arms deals?
Def: have you heard anything?
Wit: No. never heard that.
Def: But you do rely on the BBC for some of your information, don’t you?
Def: Have you read anything in the press about Ukrainianinvolvement?
Def: Have you any explanation why Ukrainians don’t appear in your notes?
Wit: No, i can’t explain anything, it is something I wanted to indicate
Def: You’ve been talking to other people about the evidence in this case haven’t you?
Def: Re: the second arms shipment you were involved in, Tab 2: 30686: [reading], this is the interview after the one in February in 2007 where you said you did three trips to Monrovia, this is the next interview at the end of March 2007, I’m going to read part of it: Witness made his second trip to Monrovia with Sam Bockarie again. Did you say that?
Wit: Yes. I took a trip with Sam Bockarie back from Monrovia.
Def: I did not read out the word “back” ?
Wit: That is what the interpreter said.
Judge: Asking interpreter to repeat the question.
Def: [reading again] “Witness made his second trip to Monrovia with Sam Bockarie again”?
Wit: In Liberia again, I did not say Monrovia.
Def: So they got it wrong when you said Monrovia?
Def: Did you correct that error?
Def: This is a very important error, so why didn’t you correct it?
Wit: I forgot.
Def: [continue reading] “but he first went alone and returned to Buedu” did you say this?
Def: Did anyone first go alone and return to Buedu?
Wit: No, I can’t recall that.
Def: How was it that you got o Monrovia on this occasion?
Wit: We went on an operation in Lufa, it was that time that forces occupied Lufa, and then Sam took me and we went to Monrovia.
Def: When you say “cleared them” what happened?
Wit: They were occupying some towns in Liberia, and Mr. Taylor told him to clear the area and push out the enemy.
Def: What did you get from the enemy when you pushed them back?
Wit: War materials, food.
Def: You were able to get a large quantity of ammunition?
Def: and you were able to take some of those arms and ammunition to Sierra Leone for the RUF’s own use?
Def: Where did you take it to?
Wit: We too it from Foya to Buedu.
Def: And you had plenty of materials then, didn’t you?
Def: and there was no need for you to go to Monrovia for more arms and ammunition was there?
Wit: WE didn’t go for materials.
Def: Why i you haven’t gone for materials did you comeback with materials
Wit: materials are moral boosters
Def: You get a large quantity of materials, which you take back home to Sierra Leone, and then Charles Taylor give you a financial reward and more materials?
Def: The third trip is in the year 2000?
Def: At that time disarmament is already taking place?
Def: You are personally involved in supervising? There is a cease fire yes?
Def: disarmament starts in 2000?
def: You monitor cease fire in 2002?
Def: You are also involved with disarmament?
Def: Why are you going to Liberia for more arms in 2000 when you yourself are involved in the cease fire and the disarmament process?
Pros: Object to that question. He did not say he went to Monrovia for arms, he said he was called to meet Charles Taylor.
Def: Why was the RUF looking for more arms at the time when you, as a senior figure in the organization are involved in ceasefire and disarmament yourself?
Wit: RUF was looking for more arms in 2000 to do what?
Def: That is what I’m asking you?
Pros: objection-this witness has not said that RUF was looking for more arms at that time.
Def: Witness said, in his first interview he said he did three trips for arms, it should read two trips for arms. So this third trip on basis of what he accepts he said his third trip is for arms. He has never said that sentence was wrong in its entirety. So I can ask the question. Why are you going back to Monrovia for arms in 2000.
Wit: It was not for arms, we went to meet with the President, later Issa went and we returnedwith ammunition, I did not go for ammunition. That is not why we went. My statement did not say that
Def: Tab 2 30687: [reading] “witness said, the third time he travelled to Monrovia for arms…sam had already left the RUF and went to Monrovia…Issa was the leader when witness made his third trip for arms .” you told them in the first interview you told them you went for arms, in the second interview you go into more details, did you say that the third time you went for arms, Sam had already left the RUF and went to Monrovia?
Def: What have they got wrong there?
Wit: I did not travel to Monrovia 3 times, I travelled to Liberia 3 times. They asked how many times was I involved in arm travel in Liberia.
Def: “of course I was involved in arms issues in Monrovia three times”?
Def: Did you correct this when I read it back to you?
Wit: I believe so sir.
Def: again, they have not been corrected on this particular issue.
Wit: I believe I corrected it.
Def: So they missed your correction?
Wit: I believe so.
Def: “Issa Sesay was the leader of the RUF when witness made third trip to Monrovia for arms shipment” ?
Wit: yes, Issa Sesay was the leader of the RUF.
Def: when you made your third trip to Monrovia for arms shipment.
Wit: As long as I was involved in arms shipment I went to Monrovia.
Def: So they got the number of trips to Monrovia wrong, but the purpose was right?
Wit: I wentt o Liberia three times. The last trip I did not go for arms but I brought arms.
Def: This was after the May 8 incident in Freetown?
Wit: What movement is that?
Def: That is the third trip?
Wit: After May incident.
Def: Witness was commander and was asked by Sesay to go to Monrovia?
Wit: I was Brigade commander, but Issa did not tell me to take it there [?]
Def: It was not Issa who told you to take what there?
Wit: It was no Sesay who asked me to go to Monrovia, he asked me to run the mission, after that mission I was sent to Monrovia.
Def: So they recorded that wrong?
Def: Did you correct them?
Wit: If it is not correct then I did not correct it.
Def: “Witness was at this time Brigade Commander when he was request by Sesay to accompany to Monrovia where they were picked up by helicopter and taken to Monrovia” Did you say that they traveled from Buedu to Foya?
Def: What do they have wrong there?
Wit: I came back to Foya and I did not go with Issa.
def: Did you correct that?
Wit: N o.
Def: Why not?
Wit: Maybe I did not get it clearly when it was read out to me, because they just read it out once.
Def: Do you agree that that passage that I just read, very clearly states, that Issa asked you togo with him to Monrovia, and you went together from Buedu to Foya and from there via helicopter to Monrovia?
Wit: No. I did not say that. I never moved with Issa.
Judge: counselor is asking what was written, not asking who you wentwith.
Def: Di you agree that the passage we have been looking at clearly says that issa asked you to give with him, and you two went together to Monrovia via helicopter?
Wit: Well, that is what you have read, I believe if it was not on the paper you wouldn’t have read it.
Def: Now that is totally wrong as to what you tell us in court today.
Wit: yes, it is wrong.
Def: You could not possibly have misunderstood it when it was read back to you?
def: You couldn’t have misunderstood it?
Wit: The one you just said, I was supposed to understand it.
Def: Do you agree that it is likely that you did tell prosecutors this during the interview?
Wit: No. That is not what I meant.
Def: Do you agree that there are far too many uncorrected mistakes for these to be mistakes by the prosecution?
Pros: Object to that question.
Def: Do you think that it is likely in view of all the uncorrected mistakes that you were actually telling the prosecution these things and that your recollection is not as accurate as it was back then?
Wit: No. What I say now is the correct one.
Def: When was it that you saw Zigzag Mahzar for the first time?
Wit: First time I saw Zigzag was in Liberia.
Wit: In Liberia, either first or second trip to Liberia.
Def: Where in Liberia?
Def: What was he doing when you saw him in Foya?
Wit: That is where he was.
Def: What was he doing?
Wit: Zigzag Mahzar, I can not tell you now what he was doing there.
Def: What was he doing the first time you saw him?
Wit: During that time it was operation time, that we went there.
judge: That does not answer the question.
Wit: I can’t recall that now.
Def: On which occasssion was it that he was sitting down to a dinner of human flesh?
Wit: That was during the First attack when we went with sam Bockarie to fight, that wasthe time we captured ULIMO soldier and brought him to Foya.
Judge: We are close to time limit.
Def: You’ve told us that you were in Liberia fighting against the Lud on two occasions?
Def: On which of these two occasion was ZigZag eating human flesh?
Wit: first one, 1998.
Judge: Mr. Witness we are going to adjourn again until 9:30 and I want to remind you that you are under oath and you arenot to discuss your evidence with any other person.