Afternoon Session: Defense Counsel Concludes Cross-Examination of Witness in Closed Session; Prosecution Counsel Conducts Re-Examination of Witness in Open Session

3:00PM: Defense counsel Courtenay Griffiths concluded the cross-examination of Witness TF1-579 entirely in private/closed session. When court resumed in open session, prosecution counsel Nicholas Koumjian concluded re-examination of the witness. The witness concluded his testimony.

Re-Examination of Witness

Prosecution counsel Nicholas Koumjian led the witness through re-examination. During this process, counsel sought to clarify a few things about which the witness was asked during cross-examination. Counsel asked the witness about the death of Sam Bockarie. The witness had earlier on testified that when Bockarie was killed, he went into hiding. He said that Benjamin Yeaten later asked him what he would have done if he was ordered to kill Bockarie. He said he responded that he would have obeyed the order. He said Yeaten then ordered him to arrest Bockarie’s Sierra Leonean bodyguards and acting on that order, he was able to arrest two of the said bodyguards. 

Counsel asked the witness about the photograph shown to him during cross-examination which showed a diamond formation of closed protection for Mr. Taylor. In the photo, the witness identified several individuals including Yeatan. Counsel asked the witness to say what Yeatan’s height was and the witness responded that he had the same height with Yeaten.  He also said that another bodyguard, Musa Njai, a Gambiam was a little taller than him but shorter than prosecution counsel Koumjian. Judge Doherty asked Mr. Koumjian what his height is and he said that last time he checked, he was just about 6 feet one inch tall.

Counsel also asked the witness about the photo shown to him in which he identified men in uniform. The witness said that the SSS originally used black uniforms when Taylor first became president but the said uniform was later given to the police while the SSS wore a navy blue uniform.

Counsel asked the witness about Jungle. He said that Jungle was the chief laiason between the RUF and Taylor’s government. He said that Jungle took orders from Taylor and Yeaten.

The witness went through a list of names of people he said were executed on orders from Taylor. Some of the names mentioned were Isaac Baye, Alloscious Mending, Cascious Jacobs, Joe F. Doe, Jackson Doe, Ojuku Larry, Samuel Doki, etc. On the death of Oliver Vanny, the witness said he saw his corpse after his execution. He said he cannot say why Vanny’s body was not burried after his execution.

Counsel asked the witness to explain what he meant when he said in his earlier testimony that the RUF and the government were one. The witness said he meant the RUF and Taylor’s government were the same because RUF commanders had free passage to Monrovia and NPFL fighters had same access to RUF territories. He said that ammunition was transported from Monrovia to Sierra Leone for the RUF.

That was the end of re-examination.

Judges’ Questions

Judge Lussick asked the witness about his visit  to Mr. Gray in the defense office. This was an issue that the witness had testified about during private/closed session. The witness said he went there because Mr. Gray sent that he wanted to see him. Justice Lussick asked him why he went there when he had already indicated that he did not intend to  testify for the defense. The witness said he went there to hear what Mr. Gray had to say and that he reiterated his position to him that he did not wish to testify for the defense. He said that the last time Gray called to see him, he refused to go.

That brought the witness’s evidence to conclusion.

Court adjourned for the day.