As Taylor’s Defense Objects To The Introduction Of “New Evidence”, Prosecutors Seek More Time To “Rearrange Strategies” For Taylor’s Cross-Examination

The much-anticipated cross-examination of Charles Taylor started this week with a stumble, as Special Court for Sierra Leone judges did not allow prosecutors to use a well-known public document — Sierra Leone’s peace agreement — as a basis for questioning the former Liberian president, because it had not been admitted as evidence in the trial so far.  The judges cautioned the prosecution on the introduction of “new evidence” after its case was closed, a move referred to by Mr. Taylor’s defense counsel as a “trial by ambush.” Prosecutors also told Mr. Taylor that he had “reason to lie” during his four months of testimony which he had spent rebutting charges of war crimes and crimes against humanity for his alleged role in crimes during Sierra Leone’s brutal conflict — and that he needed to prepare to be “honest” in cross-examination, which started on Tuesday in The Hague

In a move that led to the proceedings being adjourned early on Wednesday, lead prosecution counsel, Ms. Brenda Hollis, sought to ask the accused former president questions about certain provisions in the Lome Peace Accord – a peace agreement signed between the Sierra Leonean government and the country’s main rebel group, the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) in the Togolese capital, Lome, in 1999. In an attempt to present a copy of the Lome agreement to Mr. Taylor to discuss specific provisions that benefitted the RUF, Ms Hollis aimed to establish Mr. Taylor’s influence during the peace process.  However, Mr. Taylor’s defense counsel, Courtenay Griffiths, objected.  He argued it was “new evidence” which was not submitted to the court during the prosecution’s own case, nor used during Mr. Taylor’s direct examination. The defense called it a trial by “ambush” for the prosecution to present “fresh evidence” after it had already closed its case.

Presiding judge, Justice Richard Lussick, said that the interests of justice require consideration of all evidence against the accused, but it was necessary to “balance such need for justice with the fair trial rights of the accused.” The judges ruled that Ms. Hollis could not introduce new evidence in the form of documents which had not been presented as part of the prosecution’s case and were not used by the defense in direct-examination of the accused.

Ms. Hollis referenced a ruling by these same judges in the trial of Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) commanders before the Special Court for Sierra Leone when they allowed “fresh evidence” against the accused during cross-examination. In his response, Justice Lussick said that while this was the case, every case must be looked at based on its individual merits. The AFRC commanders were eventually convicted and are currently serving jail terms in Rwanda. Justice Lussick urged the Prosecution to make a formal written application to allow the defense opportunity to respond about the inclusion of the Lome Accord. After that, the judges could rule on whether new documents could be introduced as part of the prosecution’s cross-examination of the accused. The prosecution’s written motion should be filed on or before Tuesday November 17, with a response from the defense due on Monday November 23 and any prosecution reply to the defense response should be filed by Wednesday November 25th.

The judges also rejected Ms. Hollis’s request to ask “good faith basis questions” which “will be premised on the documents” but without using the documents themselves. Mr. Griffiths called it ”unacceptable.”

“It is a back door way of getting into the tribunal,” he said.

“You cannot make use of any of these documents until a formal motion is submitted,” Justice Lussick ordered.

Ms. Hollis at this stage asked the court to give the prosecution more time to “consider organizing our presentation” while work is being done on the formal motion for the presentation of the documents. The judges ordered that the court will adjourn for the day to give time to the prosecution to re-organize their presentation and continue the cross-examination of the accused the following day.

When court resumed on Thursday, the trial was cut short for the second day in a row, as Ms. Hollis asked for more time to “rearrange strategies” for the cross-examination of Mr. Taylor. Ms. Hollis requested an adjournment until Monday as the prosecution needed more time to plan. The application was granted by the judges.

Earlier on Tuesday, when Ms. Hollis commenced the cross-examination of Mr. Taylor, the lead prosecutor told the former president he has not been “honest” in direct-examination and that she is ready to prove that Mr. Taylor has been telling lies. Ms. Hollis, briefly taking Mr. Taylor through a few documents that he had discussed in direct-examination, pointed out the absence of certain key words used by the accused former president. In a letter written by Mr. Taylor to former United States president George Bush, Ms. Hollis asked Mr. Taylor to point out in the letter where he had said to Mr. Bush that he would step down as Liberian president, as claimed by the former president in his direct examination.

In his response, Mr. Taylor said that the portion of the letter which read that “I have considered recusing myself from the political process” indicated his intention to step down as Liberian president.

“That is my understanding counsel, that is how I understand it,” Mr. Taylor said.

Ms. Hollis, referencing Mr. Taylor’s May 2000 meeting with United States Special Envoy for Africa, Rev. Jesse Jackson, accused Mr. Taylor of not giving Rev. Jackson an honest answer when he did not admit that former Revolutionary United Front (RUF) commander Sam Bockarie and his fighters were being trained as mercenaries by Mr. Taylor in Liberia. Mr. Taylor “misled” the US envoy, as Ms. Hollis put it to the accused. Mr. Taylor denied the allegation, insisting that he gave an honest answer to the US Special Envoy.

“I object to the fact of mercinerization. I did give an honest answer to Special Envoy Jackson. Your suggestion that I was dishonest is not true and you should not allude to that,” Mr. Taylor said.

“I was not being misleading and if Special Envoy Jackson had asked me whether I was training those men and I said no, then I would have been misleading,” he added.

Mr. Taylor insisted that if he had been training Sierra Leonean rebel fighters and supplying arms and ammunition to RUF rebels, he would have said so. He also denied ever receiving diamonds from RUF rebels in Sierra Leone.

“If I had been training or supplying arms to the RUF, there is no reason why I would have denied it. If I had done so, I would have said so,” the former president said.

As he denied allegations of his alleged support to RUF rebels and receiving diamonds mined in Sierra Leone, Mr. Taylor accused the prosecution of building its case on “lies.”

“To suggest that I will deny something like that, remember, this whole case is a lie–my activities as president, that I sent arms to Sierra Leone, that I received diamonds from Sierra Leone, there is no evidence and your failure accept it, it’s all lies,” he said.

Ms. Hollis put it to Mr. Taylor that he has more reason to lie about his actions compared to the numerous witnesses who have testified against him. Mr. Taylor responded that “I have told this court the truth, unless you bring evidence that I am lying.”

“We will prove that,” Ms. Hollis responded.

As Mr. Taylor moved to the closure of his four months of direct-examination on Monday, he told the court that he decided to leave the Liberian presidency for asylum in Nigeria because he wanted peace in his West African homeland.

“I decided that I will leave for the sake of peace,” the accused former Liberian president said.

In August 2003, as rebel forces advanced on the Liberian capital Monrovia with an aim of unseating Mr. Taylor, the former president agreed to step-down as president. He left Liberia in August 2003 and relocated to Nigeria, where he lived until March 2006 when he was transferred to the custody of the Special Court for Sierra Leone. In his testimony on Monday, Mr. Taylor explained the circumstances surrounding his departure from Liberia and the unsealing of the indictment against him by the Special Court’s Chief Prosecutor.

Following his indictment while on peace talks in Ghana, West African leaders assured Mr. Taylor that they would inform the United Nations Security Council that the indictment was “unacceptable” and that it would be “quashed,” he said.

“I was informed that the UN Security Council will meet and the indictment will not stand. It was based on that assurance that I got on the plane and returned to Liberia,” Mr. Taylor explained.

On the strength of this promise, Mr. Taylor said he left Liberia for Nigeria in August of 2003. In March 2006, with pressure from the international community, Nigeria agreed to hand Mr. Taylor over to the democratically elected government of Liberia, which in turn handed him over to the custody of the Special Court for Sierra Leone. He was later transferred to The Hague where his trial is being hosted.

Mr. Taylor is accused of providing support to RUF rebels who waged an 11-year war on the government and people of Sierra Leone. It is alleged, among other things, that Mr. Taylor occupied a position of control over RUF rebels and that he could have prevented or punished rebel forces crimes against the people of Sierra Leone — including crimes of sexual violence, murder and recruitment of child soldiers. Mr. Taylor has denied all 11 charges of war crimes, crimes against humanity and other serious violations of international humanitarian law against him. Mr. Taylor started his direct-examination as a witness in his own defense on  July 14, 2009 and concluded almost four months alter, on November 10, 2009. Prosecutors are now corss-examining Mr. Taylor.

His trial will continue Monday.


  1. Noko4, Noko5 , Jose, Andrew, my man Harris Johnson and others,
    Have you guys been able to make a phone call trying to locate Aunty Teage lately? It’s seems as if she’s missing in action! I really thinking about her where about and her safety, I hope she’s doing fine. If we don’t hear from her in the next few days, I kindly request that we all should come together and ask papay Fallah to help us search for her in the name of true Justice!

    1. Jocone,
      Aunty Teage has now realized that this is NOT a play play thang. Regardless of what some made think of Mr. Taylor, he has the STAGE and he’s putting ALL on notice until the FAT LADY sings, the game is on and he has his game face on.

      In as much I want Mr. Taylor acquitted, I am very very DISAPPOINTED in Ms. Hollis performances……she is behaving like a CLERK instead of a LEAD COUNSEL.

    2. Ms. Teage,

      Everyone is concerned about you. I understand that you have a new job, and in the reach of some good dollars, but please drop by once in a while, because there was a crash landing and faa has given some room for assessment, after that there will be a hell of a take off. You do not want to be left out.

    3. My Brother Jocone,

      Ever since Noko5, Noko4, and andrew jlay gave Aunty Teage technical knock outs, she has gone missing. However, I will take a look around Ma Ellen’s house in the fish market area. Maybe she is stocked and confused among the fish. I can assure you that those guys really knocked her out of balance.


      Harris K Johnson

  2. Jocone,

    Everybody on the prosecution team has jumped ship or is jumping ship. The first person to jumped ship was David Crane, next Steven Rapp. Ms Hollis will soon be quitting, she is passed off with Crane and Rapp, they left her hanging to dried. J fallah manjor has thrown the towel in the ring. He’s not sitting on the fence, he has jumped the fence. Aunty Teage billed out a while back.

  3. Plus Jocone, you remember the saying “LIBERIA ARE LAWYERS” Mr. Taylor is proving that sentiment to be true….a non lawyer is defeating a lawyer at her game??? Amazing.

  4. Hi Tracey

    If you won’t mind can you please post active (the most resent) photos of President Taylor in court to help those of us who do not have live access to the court hearings?

    1. Hi DC – let me see if I can get some photos from the Special Court to be able to post on the website.

      1. Hi Tracey,
        I have been trying to post a comment. However, when it is submitted, it never shows as being under moderation or posted. Is there something with the comment or the submit link?

        1. Hi Ken – I have been posting every comment that comes through if it fits our policy. If you still don’t see it appear, would you mind resubmitting? I am sorry for any inconvenience caused.

      2. Tracey,
        I think the problem was I had a link in it. I did resubmit it without the link and it was posted thank you,

  5. All comments about this case should be asked to Mr. J Fallah. He knew that Mr Taylor was guilty long long time ago, base on the prosecutor evidence of HEARSAY.
    I bet that some of those witnesses that testified, can not remember what they said in that court.
    But I am waiting for Monday morning to see what new tricks from the prosecutor and the mine game coming into play
    But please remember, Mr Taylor, cannot be pushed over or intimidated.

    J Fallah will you be commenting on Monday.after the hearing? cause I’ll love to hear from you.


  6. Alpha summarized Taylor:

    “If I had been training or supplying arms to the RUF, there is no reason why I would have denied it. If I had done so, I would have said so,” the former president said.

    As he denied allegations of his alleged support to RUF rebels and receiving diamonds mined in Sierra Leone, Mr. Taylor accused the prosecution of building its case on “lies.”

    “To suggest that I will deny something like that, remember, this whole case is a lie–my activities as president, that I sent arms to Sierra Leone, that I received diamonds from Sierra Leone, there is no evidence and your failure accept it, it’s all lies,” he said

    Good summary Alpha, you hit some of the key points. But why would Taylor hide his support for RUF when Sierra Leone and Guinea were supporting rebels against Liberia? Taylor had all right to support, similarly, war in SL if he had the means. If Taylor had weapons , does this prosecution think LURD and MODEL were ever going to come deep into Liberia? This case is really unfair, not just to Charles Taylor but to all Liberians who suffered at the hands of ULIMO, LURD, MODEL, and LPC.

    Those rebels groups were financed and supported by external forces , and those rebel groups committed serious atrocities abusing human rights. Yet no question is ask of them; they freely operated in Guinea and SL but no questions. One thing is clear here, the prosecution put DIAMONDS above human life. Because of SL DIAMONDS they are prosecuting Taylor but they careless about actual human life. YOUR FREE THIS MAN AND LET HIM RETURN TO HIS HOMELAND!

  7. Jocone,
    You are a caring soldier. I want to think Ms. Teage computer might giving her some problems. Besides, I hope she is ok in health.

  8. Jocone,

    Teage is also looking for new evidence. Teage, are you listening? where are you? Please don’t tell us that you “started a new job” and you are making ‘good money”, that’s why you disaapeared. I think you can chew gums and walk at the same time. Please show up like Ms. Hollis. Because it looks like this thing is being one sided now since this website, Tracey, and Alpha, concluded to make it a equaled and leveled playing field from day one of the trial.

    I always said, thank god for this website. All the truths that we are hearing and knowing would never have been known or made possible by the elite media. It is primarily because of this site, that is compelling other local papers in Monrovia and elsewhere to report on the trial: eventhough biased, but they are forced to talk about it.

  9. Hi Tracey,

    please answere this hyperthetical question; Lets assume, either you or Alpha was a prosecution lawyer in such high profile case like what we are seeing now. What could be some reasons that may encourage the intrduction of new evidences, if you did at this point of such case.

      1. Oh Tracey,

        Come on, you know very well where we headed with all these questions. So this delay reverting that you are doing is meanly because you do not want to preempt the courts decision/ruling. We quite understand as a legal practitioner, you do not jump the gun. ok. but after the rulings i hope you can come with some satisfying legal foundations.

        1. Andrew — Thanks for your understanding and hopefully we will get a ruling from the chamber in the coming days.

      2. Tracey,
        If the judges rule against the prosecutors and that was their SOLE FOUNDATION in building up against Mr. Taylor’s credibility…..whatelse?

        1. The prosecution will continue the cross-examination of Mr. Taylor with or without the so-call fresh evidence. The prosecution is barking up the wrong tree, if they think they can show that it was Mr. Taylor who made those specific provisions that benefited the RUF in the Lome Agreement. The Lome Agreement is really a reworded agreement of The Abidjan and The Conakry Peace Plan, which Mr. Taylor spoke of both in his testimony. If you listen he prosecution, the only people at the negotiation was Taylor, Kabbah, and Sankoh. “The Lomé peace negotiations” Ismail Rashid (September 2000), is a good in-depth step by step written about the Lome process. It tells who were the major players and influencers at the negotiation and who form the negotiation teams for both parties.

  10. Ladies and gentlemen,
    I think Brenda Holis need to employ one evidence zar or reindict Taylor.Cuz It seems as though she is going to be in real trouble. What will she do when other witnesses start to appear..IT REALY WASTE !!!!!

  11. Alpha Sesay,

    Bravo Zulu and more power to you. You hit the ball of the park. However, you have just said something that the elite media in the world will not say easily. What you have just said, clearly demonstrates the highest degree of honesty and professionalism in your journalistic career. You have shown that you will never compromise what is right, but to always uphold the good tenets of journalism. This is the statement that got me fired up. Under “pressure from the international community, Nigeria agreed to hand over Mr. Taylor to the democratically elected government of Liberia, which in turn handed him over to the custody of the Special Court for Sierra Leone. He was later transferred to the Hague where his trial is being hosted.” Alpha, how hard is it for the news media to say what you have just said? The fact of the matter, they don’t want President Johnson Sirleaf to be implicated in any way, shape, or form in the illegal indictment, manacle, arrest, and trial of this man. Now you have disclosed this so-called “Top Secreat” that It was Ellen government that turned this innocent man over to Special Court for Sierra Leone to be prosecuted and not Nigeria as they want us to believe. Look, we all know this to be a conspiracy in kidnapping this man. What President Johnson Sirleaf fails to realize is this. In the final analysis, these westerners will say the truth through the sale of books and she will be the usual and prime suspect in making this thing to happen. Notwithstanding, I wrote a piece on this website before. I made mention of a very popular talk show host in the US by the name of Rush Limbaugh take on slavery. He said the white people didn’t go to Africa and captured potential African slaves. But instead, it was the African kings themselves that sold their own people into slavery. However, he was just giving a justification or reasonable excuse why slavery was permissable and right.
    Now the “Great” Alpha has just told us that it was the Liberian government of President Johnson Sirleaf that turned over her own citizen to be humiliated by the same inherent slave merchants. Again, through kings. But this time around, it is not king, but queen Ellen.

  12. Fallah,

    The ruling Unity Party of Johnson Sirleaf has lost the by election in Liberia again by 6% from the hands of “Soccer Tabely King, Opong.” Just imagin the naked name that is disgracing Ellen, “Opong.” What that tells you? All things tied into this ONE MAN, TAYLOR. The same pepple you guys continue to call uneducated, voted against your so-called book people. Trust me Fallah, we the people are not stupid. We know what is good for ourselves. We don’t need no white man to tell us who to vote for. Let them leave us alone.

    Fallah, another notorous warlord, Alihaji Kromah, participated in the by election. However, he was only able to secure about 6% of the total votes cast. According to the logic you and other Taylor’s haters continue to advance, such as Taylor only won because the people was afraid that he would have brought war on them, if he had not won. So what happened the other day to this other trigger happy warmonger, Kromah, again? Is he a good rebel who can heal the sick, or “turn water into wine”?

    Fallah, let me tell you what I would have advice President Johnson Sirleaf about this Taylor arrest. I would have told her, Madam President, if the international community really wants him, they can still get him without your input. Secondly, Johnson Sirleaf’s government has no interest in writing Nigeria a secret letter with a malicious intent to have him handed over to the Liberian government, and later turn him over, to the international community: especially, since “Lberia has no charge” on this man. I think, it was the prudent thing to do, if she had done it. Reason being that, that which unites us, is much more greater, than that which divides us. Therefore, Liberia must survive. But Ellen thought she could play games with these people and the Liberia people.

    Trust me, mark it down, today Sunday morning in Japan, the international community will betray President Sirleaf, just like the way they did others before her. And is not going to be too far from today’s date, November 15, 2009.

  13. Jacone,

    I think Msteage may have given up after the woeful performance of the prosecution during opening week of cross examination.

  14. Jose, let me respond to your disjointed accusations why Madame Sirleaf turn taylor to the Sierra Leone Court, and your silly analysis about Opong winning 6% and etc…!
    First of all why should you wonder about how taylor should have gotten arrested since he was a “wanted warlord” being accused by the International Body for crimes against Humanity, and specifically for rapes, murders, force labour, sexual slavery, and force recruitment of under age children that he armed to carry on senseless cruelty against civilian populations? It really doesn’t matter who turned taylor in, but what matters is that this “warlord” was captured, legal process followed, indicted, and now locked up until proven guilty since the court is was correct in assuming Taylor is a flight risk!
    Now about Opong’s 6% win, I really don’t understand your whinning here instead of taking the matter before the court if you are so convinced about wrong doings here!

    1. Fallah,
      Your answere to jose, is more agressive and less informative. Just so you know, Mr. Taylor was indicted before being sold for few pieces of silver by obasanjo. My friend , it matter who turned Taylor in . I say so because if” Ellen , the western puppet ” had not done that , she would have jeopardised the welfare agreements she had established with her donors. So , all I advice is calm down and stop pretending to be tuff.

    2. HI Jose — I have a comment of yours under moderation relating to Opong and Johnson Sirleaf. I can post it once you remove the first three sentences to make it fit with our policy. Let me know if you need a copy of the text you wrote.

    3. Fallah,
      you misread or misinterpreted my post. I may not know your motives. But I think your action of misrepresenting my post is either through negligence, culpable inefficiency, or your inability to grasp what others have written or just mere errors on your part. For an example: where in my post that you responded to, or any other posts, have I ever whined about “Opong” six percentage points victory over President Johnson Sirleaf Unity Party? Where are you coming from with Jose “whining” about Opong 6% victory? Ladies and gentlemen, my understanding about whining means “complaint” about some dissatisfaction. Clearly Fallah, I’m happy and very happy to see this western supported government of President Sirleaf being hammered by someone like Opong. However, If you have the time, please re-read what you responded to and come back to tell me if I ever whined about Opong’s 6% victory.

      Fallah, concerning President Taylor arrest, you said, “it doesn’t matter who turned Taylor in, but what matters is that this warlord was captured. Again Fallah, you are clueness. You are looking at it one way. Notwithstanding, It matters. If it did matter, Nigeria would have turned him over to the court directly. It matters. If it didn’t matter, the International Community would have gotten him through another means. It matters. If it didn’t matter, Great Britian and America would have kidnapped/captured him from Nigeria. It matters. If it didn’t matter, the plane that took him in and out to Liberia would have been intercepted in mid air and detoured to Sierra Leone or somewhere else. However, President Taylor being arrested in Liberia has far reaching and irreversible consequencies
      Now let me tell you why President Johnson Sirleaf government was used in this illegal process and why it matters. It was a trap set for her, plain and simple. This trap was to make her dependent or parasitic on these world powers. Nevertheless, turning President Taylor over for prosecution in the midst of this vast ocean of popularity for Mr. Taylor, will create a condition of cleavages of our nation. Thereby making her to rely on them heavily for security and other support at the detriment of the Liberian people. She will have to live up to the whims and caprices of these people without any objection: forcing her government to sign multi national contracts that by and large exploit the country and conversely, benefits “Big Countries.” However, most Liberians, about 80%, are finding it very difficult to even afford US1.00 per day in the midst of all these supports to her government. Even Global Witness, an International Advocacy Group has asked the Liberian government couple of times, to renegotiate these multi national company contracts that are exploiting Liberia. But Ellen can not do it, for fear of making her power base angry. Thereby making her even more vulnerable since in fact her domestic policy is that of “Natural Selection.”

      Fallah lastly, don’t put words in my mouth. Where in my post, did I “wonder about how Taylor should have gotten arrested……” Fallah, why are you putting words in my mouth to go against your own words. However, I think this statement that you falsely accused me of, is being dishonest, and I will consider it to be, Fallah against Fallah. At no time did I ever say, I wonder how President Taylor would have been arrested as alleged by you.

  15. Bravo!!!! the Unity Party of Johnson Sirleaf is on its way OUT!!! she and her western pay masters would soon find out that they cannot tell the Liberian people what to do! Liberians will choose whoever they want to lead them wether “he killed their Pa! or he killed their Ma!”

  16. Ms. Hollis,

    where are you leading us to again? What’s up with this fifteen boxes of President Taylor personal archives has to do with you? Why you want to know so badly who was keeping the 15 boxes of the documents? Are you planing to have the person on UN travel ban and asset freeze list too.
    Look Ms. Hollis, if you don’t have any further questions concerning Sierra Leone, call it a day, and go home. The fifteen boxes of documents is neither for Sierra Leone, nor the UN, Ecowas, AU, America, Great Britian, the Special Court, and any other person other than Taylor and perhaps, the Liberian people. Notwithstanding, are you not satisfied with the ones you have in your possession as the result of the searching of his legal residence by your team and taking away documents belonging to him and not you. By the way, why do you want to know how President Taylor got the document and how it was transported? However, do you think President is one of your paid witnesses like vamuya Sherif who said his evidence got burnt in his mother house during LURD war? Another thing, where are you coming from again to say President was in Monrovia two months for the Thomas Quawonkpa invasion? Ways to go, Ms. Hollis. However, I like the way he answerd you. He said if you had done your research correctly, you will not be asking him these kinds of questions. Mr. Taylor, OUTSTANDING.

    1. Jose,
      This whole thing is reaching a point where it is actually getting nonesensical. Why is this brenda woman not asking Mr. Taylor about her claims about the sierraleone war for which he was indicted, but instead, asking questions like she wants to employe him in a human resource position.. please.. I just hope these judges are watching and listening kinly.

    2. Brenda Hollis,
      Please proof that Taylor commited the crimes you indicted him for and stop asking about tellephone calls and how its’s regulated. The world is waiting pateintly and watching you ok!!!. Prooof the brother wrong sister!!!

  17. Hi Fallah, Ms. Teage and Cos,

    Please help me, but I fail to comprehend the direction in which the cross-examination was headed this morning. I do not see the importance to this case, the issue of Griffiths wrongly drawing a semi-circle while sketching Mr. Taylor compound. I do not see the importance to this case of administrative issues like Taylor using phone lines to talk to would-be witnesses.

    Please help me. We are awaiting questions on the crux of the case, guns, diamonds, troops, plans to destabilize, plans to amputate, etc.

    1. Hi Bartus — today’s posting will be coming in a few hours. Keep your eye out — should be an interesting day today.

  18. Ms. Teage,

    I read one of your posts where you mentioned that Taylor should have known that had he won the presidency war would have been inevitable. My understanding of this statement is that war would have been the only option to remove Taylor from power by those who chose to do so.

    Well Ms. Teage, why was the democratic process not an alternative?

    I have an answer. Was it that those who oppose Taylor do not trust their political backbone? Alhaji Kromah cannot win a senatoral seat in Montserrado County, the same applies to Demante Konneh, Kabina Janneh. As for Ellen she can even outdo George Weah. Do not forget that there is mounting claims that her election was like the one George Bush won in Florida, where intervention resolved the crises. Yes, South Africa and other leaders in Africa had to appeal to Weah to forego his challenge in the sake of peace.

    So please be rethink you propositions. You need to focus on why executive outcomes, sandline, Kabbah and the rest who breached the UN arms embargo against freetown by importing 2,500 pieces of AK47 and 35 tons of warlike materials.

  19. Jose Rodgriguez,

    The great Jose, you just summarized the whole case when you commented that “This Case is not based on the rule of law.”

    Yes brother, in the rule of law, no one is considered above the law, everyone is equal before the law and the government is not above the law. Here, Kabbah is not on trial. I did not regard the Kabbah scenario a serious breach until I saw the video. those who broke un arms embargo and imported arms to overthrow a government are not on trial either.

    But brother as you said it is not the rule of law. what is it then? That is the next question we will pose to Griffiths.

    1. Tracey,

      Do not forget, Griffiths promised to take our questions when Taylor’s testimony is over. Please keep the reminder live. We understand he is busy, but let him just make some time.

      1. Hi Andrew,

        Don’t worry — we will not let him forget! He may not have time until the cross-examination is over, because he will have the opportunity to re-direct questions after that point — but never fear, we are keeping him on our radar for our questions.


        1. Fallah,

          What is this other post where you mention silliness. Fallah in all fairness, what is sillier than dragging Taylor over to some self-made court to answer flimsy charges?

          Look at the barage of evidence from the prosecution, the only substantive one was that of Moses Blah. And even he help Taylor more than he did for the prosecution. Remember he dismissed the prosecution theory that Taylor and Sankoh had a quid pro quo? Yes you scratch my back and I scratch your back kind of arrangement. Moses Blah said no, there was no compact between Taylor and Sankoh.

          So what else should this guy do?

  20. In Liberia we say your first impression go a long way. In this case the first day of the cross should have been like that but to me again it was weak. Today make me to still be thinking as to when we will get to the links how this man send in arms, proof of how the Diamond were sold, proof of the Billion of Dollars and so on. These are some of the crimes we were told about.From my point I think the persecutors have to need to do more. Oh I forgot Fallah once said he had some proof but he was waiting after trial before presenting it if I can remember. Now Fallah I think the persecutors need help so you can help them with the little you got you guys are on the same side.

  21. Well, this wonderful cross examination has finally begun and already I hear people calling for acquittal. I think Ms Hollis did very well today. She is gradual establashing the stage to challenge Taylor for what the prosecution believe has been a highly flaw acount of his activities with RUf.
    She has touched on many aspects including Taylor involvement with the CIA(the ones he blame for his problems).
    I think many will be disappointed because Ms Hollis may not touch on Sierra leone proper until later this week, sometime next week. I am looking forward to this one, if today session is anything to go by.

    1. Eagle Eye,
      The ONLY thang she did worth talking about today is, SHE DID NOT ASK FOR MORE TIME. On the CIA quesions, who will she be hurting??? Even Mr. Taylor had to WARN her not to head down that road. What game was she playing by stating “TWO OF YOUR WITNESSES SAID YOU WERE IN LOFA IN MARCH ’91”??? Who are the WITNESSES when NO WITNESS has been called up?? What was the context or was she trying to poison the judges in case Mr. Taylor leaves those witnesses out???? LOW BLOW!!!

      She truly believes she is in a US court where they trap the defendant……some of the questions she asked makes me to wonder agian, if she is a CLERK or a LAWYER.

      And what is this thang with “FRIEND AND BROTHER”??? She needs to ask the Sierra Leone guy next to her about the culture about Africa….

      1. Noko4,
        Mrs. Hollis is aware she is not in a US court. The U.S. Prosecutors do not bring cases to trial unless they have solid sustainable evidences whether it is factual or circumstantial. If Mrs. Hollis were in a U.S. court and talk about the accursed potential witnesses list a mistrial possible would happen. As you have said before this is a special court with different rules from other courts especially from the U.S. courts.

        Now the context of the question may have been an attempt to get Mr. Taylor to change his answer that he was in this place Mrs. Hollis name more then one time. This would show he has been lying. Mr. Taylor did not fall for it.

        Mrs. Hollis ask Mr. Taylor was it correct that he only went to this place one time, which Mr. Taylor strongly answer that is correct only once. Then Mrs. Hollis came back with these potential defense witnesses placing him in this place on a certain date. Mrs. Hollis never can back with a follow up (unless she did when I was napping) do this certain date place Mr. Taylor at this place more then one time.

        This is my take on this question she ask Mr. Taylor, however you could be right too that she is trying to poison the judges mind against these witnesses if they are called, left out. Will say got the date mix up why they said Mr. Taylor was in this place on that date and possible Mrs. Hollis in reading the witnesses statement saw sometimes that she should not counter if the Defense calls these witnesses. Talk about them now may lead the Defense not calling them to testify. I do not the Defense will fall for that if these witnesses have information that will help their case.

        1. Ken,
          I have said it before, NO COURT in the Western World will accept the NONSENSE we see going on in this court……HEARSAYS and THE COLLECTIONS of EVIDENCES would have send the prosecutors home ASAP.

          And if she believesMr. Taylor will be TRICK into giving an answer for her to pounce upon….she ain’t see nothing yet. I can guarrantee you that Mr. Taylor and his team have gone over that Accord with a toothbrush.

  22. Andrew, you keep referring to Kabbah, sandlines and British not been in court for their involvement in Sierra Leone but has failed to show why you think they should be there. Taylor is not only in the hague because he accuse of breach UN sanction. He is there becasue he is accused of been part of network, which terrorise the sierra leone population and in so doing use very crude methods, such rape etc.

    At no point in time has Kabbah been accuse of such crimes and even CDF personnel accused, tried and found guility are carrying far less sentences because their crime were view as less severe and not as widely spread, where as the AFRC/RUF were wide spread and more coordinated. So stop trying to divert people from what is really happening.

    We all know when the issue of UN sanction breach was brought to light, the british investigated, sacked the High Commissioner and heavily sanction sandline operations. Can you tell everyone on this forum when did the taylor govt ever instigate such investigation, when there were numerous accusation in local and international media, diplomatic and humanitarian circle of several years? or are you telling everyone that everybody in the world had nothing good to do but spend their time thinking of Taylor?.

    I know Taylor may be important to you and few others but to me Taylor has/will never be what you people think he is. In my view as liberian, Taylor is just another thug in the history of liberia like all other warlords who brought lots of sufferng to the liberian masses. Do I hate the likes of Taylor, Doe, Kromah, no I don’t. I actually petty them. My only regret is that I have fellow liberians who actually think these people belong anywhere else other a prison.

    Taylor has questions to answer on Sierra Leone and it is right and proper he do so.

    1. Eagle Eye,

      Why do you fail to acknowledge facts. It is good that Taylor testified on executive outcome and sandline before the video was released. You have seen the video. Kabbah agreed to grant diamond concession to the mercernaries once restored into power. They imported arms, broke embargo and invaded sierra leone. That is criminal. What ever arms were imported was illegal so was the associated activities. All those involved with the illegality of the entire transaction committed crimes and should be punished. If you disagree with this premise then there is no need to discuss further.

      I am so thankful for this video that no one can argue that point any longer, not you, fallah nor teage. But for us, we did not need the video, we already know that Taylor did not import those arms. Do you think 2,500 pieces of AK47 is a small consignment? Not to mention the grenade launcher and other hardware.

      I have not seen reports where the British took action against the alleged groups. But if they did, it only butressed the claims. If they committed these crimes against Sierra Leone and humanity, then they should face the law in Sierra Leone and that being the special court that was set up for that. But Jose said this case is not about the rule of law.

      You said Taylor did not take any action as the British did. Yes brother, because there was no action to take. All claims were false against Liberia. But all claims against Britain were true.

      You said that Kabbah has not been accused. Yes that is where the rule of law comes in. Some people are being favored and passed over, while others are being prosecuted. That is not the rule of law. There should be equal treatment. If Kabbah breaks the law he faces the consequence and show cause why he should not as Taylor is doing.


  23. Noko4, I don’t think those issue went away, that is why the court have close session and Ms Hollis did refer to those documents to examine in due course. No doubt the court will be told.

    I don’t think the prosecution is pining its case on Taylor been a cia source of somkind, far from it.

    1. No Ms. Hollis is NOT pinning her case on the CIA link except to make Mr. Taylor looks like a TRAITOR and a CHEAP AFRICAN MAN WHO WILL SELL HIS SOUL FOR MONEY…..Remember what Mr Crane said about Africans and money??

      Her case as I see it has come down to CREDIBILITY since most of evidences were HEARSAYS….so she wants to use Mr. Taylor evidences to DISCREDIT him and she hit the FIRST STOP SIGN…..which reads…you may have to make a U TURN if you go over 65 MPH.

  24. I was totally perplexed today and did not follow the line of questioning at all. Where was all that leading? What is Ms Hollis obsession with measurements and specifics especially when they have no real relevance to the case?

    I was totally bored. I thought she came accross as someone who is very ill-informed. I am not sure she fully even understands the cultural context within which she is dealing. Well I look forward to the next phase of her cross.

    Mr Taylor, you sure need a lot of patience to endure all these non essential questions. I think Ms Hollis is a little out of her depth with this case. i think the rules of proceeding of this court are foreign to her as she is adopting US prosecution techniques is this forum.

    1. Helen – welcome back. Other readers have been missing you on the site, and wondering where you have been!

      1. Thanks Tracey,

        I am back now. I have been very busy. You all are doing as usual a very fantastic job. This forum is very informative.

        1. Thanks Helen — I am glad you find it informative and glad also that you are able to rejoin us in the conversation.

  25. Andrew my brother do not confuse crime and crime against humanity, they are two different things. What baffles me is this idea some how that everyone hates Taylor so much that they will go into this elaborate hoax to frame him, that is a complete and utter rubbish.

    By way I do not need to see the video regarding Sandline, because I am aware of the Legg and Ibbs commison setup by the british govt to do the investigation, that was nearly 10 years ago. The conservatives opposition party in the Uk sought and got a public enquiry which later criticise Sir John kerr permanent secretary at the foreign and comonwealth office but clear the then foreign secretary of misleading the house. So yes, the british did their job but taylor did not. They had nothing to hide, so laid their hand, DID TAYLOR DO THE SAME?. you bet he didn’t because he knows he was well in it.

    Andrew, I do not believe there is any court on this planet which will charge someone wih crimes against humanity for breaking an arms embargo, more so in a single shipment.
    Taylor is not been accuse of give a single shipment of arms to ruf. He is accused of controliing and directing their affairs and turn a blind eye to their crimes. You see had taylor had a credible enquiry in liberia when he was power, the liberian nation will be up in arm today against his indictment but he didn’t. I beleive taylor refusal to let anyone look underneath the bonnet of his relationship with the the RUF was not just idiological but it was fundamental to survival of his regime, atleast thats is what he believe.
    There was no need to give Boakarie and his men arm when there were dozens of Liberian who could defend liberia if attacked, particularly when hr had such bad records from his own country. But Taylor and the so-called liberator had no second thought when they unleashed murderers on the populations as long as their interest were protected.
    So lets cut the race card issue, there is nothing racist about this trial.

    1. Eagle Eye,

      Why limit the fact to pacify yourself. The issue here is not limited to the importation of arms illegally, but using the arms to inflict harm, kill, maim, that is why Norman became the sacrificial lamb for Kabbah. If we try linga norman, it will suffice for the komajors and Kabbah who is the commander in chief go free. Brother Kabbah is liable as any other person, So are the mercernaries who were accomplice. If there should be a prosecution all involved should be prosecuted. So far this is selective justice.

      You continue to claim that Taylor did not take action like the Brits. Well he had nothing to act upon. But the Brits had a house to clean and still need to hand over perpetrators.
      If Taylor had issue to prove your prosecutor would not be finding it difficult. They brought bodyguards and orderlies to testify in this kind of high profile case.

      Where have you seen bodyguards attending confidential meetings. At this point, I have made sufficient representations of my position.

    2. E-Eye,
      Crimes agianst humanity come with FACTUAL FACTS and not HEARSAYS…..and we have yet to see it…..

      This case has now come down to DOCUMENTS and who presented the most is the winner….and who presented the most?? Answer please.

  26. Eagle-eye (returns)

    If you understand how things work couple with following the documentary evidence presented in this case you will realise that there is indeed a serious hoax and convoluted set up. Yes it is possible to have people hate Mr Taylor so much especially if they think he is an arrogant black man that they needed to teach a lesson. Do not forget the mindset at the time was very right wing conservative with little regard for what was right or just. Things were being done that did not havr to necessirily meet the standards of fairness or logic in our view.

    You are alluding to the fact that by Taylor not have an inquiry in Liberia suggests that he had something to hide? That is not fair on the man or given the situation especially when he requested both the UN AU to send in monitors to ensurer that he was not doing what he was accused of and yet they did not come yet continue to write damning reports against him and his government.

    Also what about the role of the US isin providing weapons to LURD in Guinea? Was that not a part of an elaborate scheme to depose him? His government was put on an arms embargo while his opponents a vile rebel group was openly being supplied with weapons and armunition with impunity. Despite all proof presented to the international community, NOTHING was ever done about it not even a reprimand for the perpetrators! What do you call that?

    It was about race and the fact that he was disliked by the powers that be, so let’s cut to the chase and call a spade a spade,

    1. Helen,

      you are so fired up, motivated, stimulated, and delicated, since you rejoined us. More power to you Helen. As always, I enjoyed this posting.Awesome posting. Keep it up.

    1. Fallah,
      only you can interpret people speaking in tongues. As far as we are concerned, President Taylor and his defense team are speaking ENGLISH. The official language of both America and Great Britian.

  27. Helen, I do not agree with yo on both points. If you Briatain wanted to teach a lesson, they don’t to sanction him. all they need is support someone to remove him. So I don’t agree with you on that.
    Secondly, the issue of enquiry has nothing to do with LURD. Mind you this allegation has been around long before LURD started and in any case, Taylor would have had more suport from people like me if he showed the liberian people respect to try and rest these allegations. Instead he employed the very same people who he is accused of supporting, when clearly there were many liberians available to do the job, they were recruited for.

    Now you expect me to believe what he is telling me, please i am not that ignorant. To be honest, you may have personal relationship to taylor, in which case no matter the circumstance you have to identify with him. On any other level, I cannot see why anybody will not want to see these allegations dealt with once and for all. If tayor is innoocent, he will walk free and if he is guilty, find his reward in kind.

Comments are closed.