As They Continue His Cross-Examination, Defense Witness Says He Did Not Know Who Benjamin Yeaten Was

Prosecutors today continued the cross-examination of a Liberian member of Sierra Leone’s Revolutionary United Front (RUF) rebel group, Sam Flomo Kolleh who commenced his evidence last week as Charles Taylor’s final defense witness.

As he was questioned today by prosecution counsel Nicholas Koumjian, Mr. Kolleh told the court that he never knew who the Director of Mr. Taylor’s Special Security Service (SSS) Benjamin Yeaten was. Even though many witness have spoken about Mr. Yeaten, with allegations that he had close ties with RUF rebels, especially RUF commander Sam Bockarie, Mr. Kolleh insisted today that he never knew who the former Liberian rebel commander was. The witness has agreed that he was the Chief Security Officer (CSO) to Mr. Bockarie but denies any knowledge of Mr. Yeaten.

“I did not know Benjamin Yeaten,” Mr. Kolleh said today.

Mr. Koumjian pointed to the witness that he had been told that Mr. Yeaten was responsible for the execution of RUF commanders Mr. Bockarie and Superman in Liberia. While the witness agreed that the said information was given to him by one Pa Moriba, a former RUF member who later joined Mr. Taylor’s Anti Terrorist Unit (ATU), the witness said he did not ask questions about who Mr. Yeaten was.

“You did know who Benjamin Yeaten was…isn’t that true?” Mr. Koumjian asked the witness.

“I did not know Benjamin Yeaten. The time that Pa Moriba spoke to me about Benjamin Yeaten was not war time, it was after election time in Liberia,” Mr. Kolleh responded.

When asked whether he asked Pa Moriba who Mr. Yeaten was, the witness said “i told you i did not ask him.”

Asked again whether he “never heard of Benjamin Yeaten and who he was,” Mr. Kolleh again said “No. sir.”

As Mr. Koumjian attempted to ask the witness about events in Liberia especially after RUF commander Mr. Bockarie had left Sierra Leone and relocated to Liberia with several rebel forces loyal to him, Mr. Kolleh said that he had not followed Mr. Bockarie to Liberia and so cannot say anything about what obtained outside Sierra Leone.

“I told you that if you ask me any question about Liberia, i am far from it. I did not go to Liberia. If you ask me about Sierra Leone, i can tell you but for Liberia, i am far away from it,” he said.

The witness also denied prosecution allegations that in 2003, he had gone to Liberia to inform Mr. Taylor’s men that prosecutors had made contact with him.

“I did not go to Liberia in 2003,” he said.

When put to him that he had taken steps to recruit witnesses to testify for Mr. Taylor, the witness said that that was never the case.

Mr. Koumjian pointed out that the witness was the person who referred a former Liberian member of the RUF who has already testified for Mr. Taylor, John Vincent to defense lawyers. The witness denied this assertion.

“Did you refer John Vincent to the defense,” Mr. Koumjian asked the witness.

“No,” the witness responded.

Mr. Koumjian referenced a portion of Mr. Vincent’s testimony of April 1 2010 in which Mr. Vincent said that he “met Sam Kolleh and he said that he had been in touch with the defense.”

According to Mr. Vincent in his testimony, after discussing details of the case against Mr. Taylor, Mr. Kolleh told him that he needed to speak with the defense.

He [Mr. Kolleh] said that if that is the case, that the defense will need you too,” Mr. Vincent told the court during his evidence in April 2010 as he referenced his discussion with Mr. Kolleh.

When this was put to Mr. Kolleh today in court, he said that “I don’t know what John Vincent said here, what i am saying here is what i know. I did not talk to John Vincent.”

Mr. Kolleh’s cross-examination continues on Tuesday.


    1. Sekou,
      I noticed the same thing and have since emailed the court public affairs unit about it but they have not corrected the problem yet. am sure they will correct it soon. Justice Lusick also gave an indication that the reason for the judgement dismissing the motion on contempt by the defence will be published before the court resume sitting on friday.

    2. Gentlemen,

      The entire case is a scam and is characterized with filthy abnormal fraudulent misdeeds. They have no case on this innocent man, President Taylor. However, “nothing seems to stick on the defendant.” They can not prove the five billion dollars that they say this innocent man “HAS”. They can not show the gun manufacturing company that he was purchasing this weapons from for S.L. They can not show the diamond companies that he allegedly sold the S.L diamonds to. More importantly, Issa Sesay says this innocent man was never his boss nor did they take orders or instructions from him. “Your let this man go back home.” There is no case here. Stop destroying the international justice system just for this one man’s guilt. However, the big one is that the Special Court for Sierra Leone has no website to show court records as of now that the general public including the victims of Sierra Leone to read the actual transcript of what actually happen in court. UNBELIEVABLE!!!! SHAME ON THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY. SHAME ON THE INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE SYSTEM. AND SHAME ON ALL THOSE WHO ARE DEFENDING THIS FAKE CASE IN THE NAME OF JUSTICE. FREE THIS INNOCENT MAN.

    3. Hi Sekou,
      use a different browser like Mozilla Firefox or different browser, it works fine for me. i have never posted here before, but i monitor the forum everyday as well as the live trial. i just step in today to help, because i have seen many people are having this issue. maybe you guys are using Internet Explorer browser, which i also use, but i try my Firefox and it works fine, while IE didn’t. it could be a cookie that is planted in IE. have a good day brother, btw i have been keeping up with your post on this forum. you seem to be one of the sound folks to listen to. hope you find it helpful, as well as others with the same issue.

      1. Dear Chris,

        Thanks for the suggestion concerning Firefox; I can remember when Firefox did work for my Email when Internet Explorer fails to open my mail. Nevertheless, the system has come back online; thanks again.


  1. Mr. Koumjian, need to end his a cross-examination of this witness so the judges can get on with the important defense motion. Why would Mr. Koumjian put to Mr. Kolleh that in 2003 he had gone to Liberia to inform Mr. Taylor’s men that prosecutors had made contact with him? When the 2003 interview reveal that the prosecution did not even ask about Mr. Taylor to Mr. Kolleh.

  2. I think this report is fair and this is how a report should be written.

    However, I am baffled that after several days of cross examination, the prosecution has not up to this point confronted the witness with contrary evidence to show that he was not intimidated into cooperating with the prosecution when they initially contacted him in 2003. Let us not forget that the main reason the defence brought this witness to testify is to show that the prosecution employed intimidatory tactics in order to recruit their witnesses. The prosecution is trying to divert attention away from the main objective of calling this witness. The fact that the witness lied about his identity was not exposed during this trial by the prosecution it was exposed by the defence during examination in chief hence the prosecution has not scored any point in that regard. The reason for his lieing about his identity as far as I am concerned is credible giving the fact that he was afraid of what might happen to him due to the intimidation by the prosecution.

  3. The clerk sitting behind Mr. Koumjian continues to wear low cut clothes/tops – the only one in the Courtroom that does so. I see this as inappropriate in a Court of Law where everyone else is formally dressed.

  4. Boy, I love it! I love seeing a.k.a sam flomo kolleh mustapha koroma kormara, on the stand as he continues to make circus, not only of himself, but the defense, who unknowingly, thought they were doing a great job; puting this university drop-out, turned rebel, and defector to RUF, who has lost memories of all his contacts and majors of the very fighting force he fought and rose through ranks! It is not unusual for taylor’s associates to distance themselves from danger because this is their pattern of operation! I bet, if you were to put taylor back on the stand, he would distance himself from Sam too. He would tell you that he never heard such a man with so many aliases, nor did he have any meals with him and Mazdar Zigzig! These are the characters we are dealing with and the Honourable Judges know this too, that is why they are giving these clowns all the opportunity, it seems, to hang themselves for the record! Have a wonderful day taylor support clowns!

    1. Jfallah,
      It looks like you are confused about everything in this trial. Why not refresh your mind and redirect your hate for Mr. Taylor in another direction? Though you have your right to your view, please consider Mr. Taylor a free man until you and the prosecutors prove without doubt that Mr. Taylor is guilty as charged.

    2. Dear noko5,

      We cannot approve your comment at this time. The sentence beginning with “On the other hand…” does not comply with our site’s policy for comments. If you can alter your sentence or remove it, we can then post.

      Thank you.

  5. 11-9-2010
    @ Alpha, the moderator

    Can you kindly advise about the error in accessing the courts documents? As Sekou reported, the document system seems to be down. Has the court decided the defense’ outstanding motion?


  6. Now we have what one can call a report! I must give you credit for taking the critisms and responding to them in the ideal manner. Now my confidence is begining to build again, that is all we ask for. In the end, we all want justice for the victims of the war whose blood is crying for vengance, justice for the society whose laws were violated and indeed justice for the accused who remains innocent until creditably found to be guilty. Writing a fair report of the proceedings will also do the general public who have interest in this trial justice. Welldone for this one, I wish the prosecution were as magnanimous as you (Judith)!

    1. Slyvanus,

      Not too fast. However, you can be cautiously optimistic, but not too fast. These Open Society people are George Soros people who continue to use their money and power to what ever the hell they want to do like buying elections around the world including America.

      FAKE CASE!!!!

  7. FALLAH, for the record let me clarify the difference between you and Taylor; taylor is ex-president of Liberia and you are not.Taylor is a freedom fighter who is presently in custody and facing 11 counts of Human Rights violations lies; . On the other hand, fallah was one of the worse activist in Liberia as a University student and helped in laying down foundation that Ellen is now using to sell Liberia. fallah stands by what he preaches and lives an uncomfortable life based upon these principles. fallah has no leadership ambitions nor cares for excessive wealth but is the first rebel leader of Liberian thus far. These are some differences FALLAH.

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