Tuesday July 15, 2008. Daily Summaries
9:30: Court resumed and defense counsel Terry Munyard continued his cross-examination of witness Jabati Jaward in open session. During said cross-examination, defense counsel Munyard sought to solicit information on different issues relating to the witness’s examination in chief as well as questioning the witness’s credibility.
Monies Given to Witness by Office of the Prosecutor (OTP)
Defense counsel asked several questions about monies given to the witness by OTP since they established contact with him up to the time of his present testimony in court. The witness admitted to having received monies from the OTP but that they were in no way related to buying his testimony. Defense counsel mentioned dates when the witness did not make statements to the OTP but received money from them. Defense counsel also asked as to whether the witness received any money for the registration of his Liberian taxi in Sierra Leone. The witness said that he received no such money and that since he took his taxi to Sierra Leone, he has not moved it from the compound where it is packed because he has been busy with school work. He stated that all monies given to him by the OTP were specifically for transportation, lost wages when he met with them, medical treatment and for relocating his family from Liberia to Sierra Leone. Defense counsel pointed out that the OTP has so far given the witness Le. 32, 000,000. Defense suggested to the witness that his evidence could have been infleuneced by the money given to him. The witness disputed this claim.
Defense counsel sought to establish inconsistencies in the witness’s prior written statement to the OTP and that of his oral testimony in court. Defense counsel pointed out that the witness said in his oral statement that in 1993, he was a civilian living in Sierra Leone and only worked as a labourer when the RUF came to his town. The witness disputed this claim, stating that he had alrrady undergone training but that he as not involved in active fighting. He said that the person who obtained the statement could probably have misquoted him. He said that he made efforts to correct many portions of his statement where the wrong notes had been taken.
Defense counsel also asked the witness whether he had said that ULIMO K fighters had occupied the Sierra Leone Liberian border in 1993. The witness admitted he said so. Defense counsel put it to the witness that Vamunya Sheriff, who was part of ULIMO had testified in before this court that ULIMO had only fought there in 1994-95.
Defense counsel further pointed out that the witness had said in his written statement that he had known Vamunya Sheriff since 1996 when he was a member of ULIMO, compared to his oral testimony that he met Vamunya Sheriff in 2000 when he was part of Taylor’s security forces. The witness stated that he was probably misquoted in said statement as what he meant was that he had heard of Vamunya Sheriff since his fighting days with ULIMO but only met him personally in 2000. Defense counsel also pointed to a portion of the witness’s written statement where he said he had seen Vamunya Sheriff in 1998. Witness responded that he was misquoted and that he only saw Sherriff in 2000. Defense counsel again pointed out a portion of the written statement where witness said he saw Sherriff in Buedu immediately adter the junta overthrow. The witness insisted that he was misquoted. Defense counsel also asked the witness whether he had said in his written statement that when Morris Kallon went to Liberia after Top 20, he had come back with arms and ammunition. The witness said he was again misquoted as Kallon did not come with any arms and ammunition.
Defense counsel asked the witness whether he had said that he travelled with Sam Bockarie or David Musa to purchase arms from ULIMO. The witness said that he did not say so but had said that when he first went to ULIMO, it was to negotiate a cessation of hostilities between said ULIMO and RUF and that it was on the next trip that arms and ammunition were purchased from ULIMO.
Defense counsel asked the witness why he only told the OTP that Vamunya Sherriff and Sam Boickarie had travelled together to purchase arms and ammunition in March of this year. Defense counsel asked the witness whether he was told by someone to say so after Vamunya Sheriff had said the samething during his testimony before this court. The witness said no one told him to say so and that he does not know any details of Vamunya’s testimony. Defense counsel put it to the witness that he was telling lies. The witness disputed defense counsel’s assertion.
Court adjourned for the day.