12:00pm: Court resumed aftre mid-morning break and defense counsel continued and completed the cross-examination of Witness TF1-189. Defense counsel continued his line of cross-examination by establishing inconsistencies in the witness’s oral testimony in court and her written statement to prosecution investigators.
Defense counsel asked the witness about statements she made in court that she was taken to Superman’s house in Kono, then to another house, before she escaped and was caught in the bush by some other rebels who were driving a vehicle. Defense counsel asked the witness why she had given a different account to the court. The witness agreed with counsel. Counsel asked the witness whether she agreed that because of the difficult ordeal she went through in the hands of the rebels, there is a possibility of her confusing the accounts. The witness agreed. Counsel asked the witness about her account of the men in the vehicle who captured her while she was escaping. Counsel pointed out that she had confused the number of people in the vehicle in her written statement and her oral testimony. The witness agreed with counsel. Counsel asked the witness whether she agreed that she had difficulty recalling some of the things that happened to her. The witness agreed. Counsel further asked the witness why she only mentioned in her recent prepping session that a man was shot at Superman’s house and not in her statements to investigators. The witness responded that she had said so in her statement obtained by investigators in February this year. Defense counsel told the witness that there is no mention of that in her February statement. Defense counsel also pointed out that she had said in her statement that Old Ma Fattie was Sam Bockarie’s wife and then said in court that she was Issa Sesay’s wife. The witness responded that a lady had told her that she was Bockarie’s wife. Defense counsel also mentioned to the witness that she only said in court that Tamba Brima was at the meeting in Makeni but did not say so in her statements. Counsel asked the witness whether anybody suggested to her that she should say so in court. The witness responded that she had forgotten to mention that in her statements and that nobody suggested that to her. Defense counsel also referenced all her writtens statements and the fact that she did not say anything about rebels calling themselves Charles Taylor rebels. He asked the witness whether anybody suggested to her that she should say so in court. The witness said she might have forgotten to mention that and that no body suggested to her that she should say so.
Defense counsel completed the cross-examination of the witness.
Prosecution counsel Brenda Hollis led the witness through re-direct examination. Counsel sought to clarify a few things in the witness’s written testimony and her oral testimony, some of which had come up in cross-examination. Counsel asked the witness to explain what she meant when she said in her written statement that ECOMOG soldiers removed the soldiers from Freetown. The witness responded that she was referring to AFRC and RUF fighters. Counsel asked the witness how many people there were in the vehicle when she was discovered hiding in the bush. She said there were four people, including the driver. Counsel also read from the witness’s statement that she was taken to a room and raped. Counsel sought to clarify what she meant by that. She responded that she was raped in the living room and that is what she was alluding to.
Defense counsel asked that counsel should read the entire paragraph where the witness said that she was taken to the bush and raped. Brief responses and replies followed from both parties and Justice Dougherty stated that submissions could be heard on this after evidence.
The witness concluded her testimony.
41st Prosecution Witness TF1-122.
Prosecution counsel informed the court that the next witness will be TF1-122. She informed the chamber that the witness’s previous testimonies in the RUF and AFRC cases have been tendered as Rule 92bis evidence, and that the witness will just be cross-examined by the defense. It was established that Prosecution counsel will elicit the witness’s personal information and he will be asked to identify his previous transcripts. It was also clarified that the witness will testify in open session.
Court adjourned for lunch break.