At Status Conference, Defense Lawyers Say They Will Not File Final Trial Brief Until Outstanding Matters Are Dealt With

Charles Taylor’s defense team will not file any final trial briefs until several outstanding motions before the Trial and Appeals Chamber are disposed of, the former Liberian president’s lead defense counsel, Courtenay Griffiths, told the Special Court for Sierra Leone judges at a status conference Thursday in The Hague.

The status conference had been convened to give defense lawyers the opportunity to explain why they had failed to file their final trial brief on the January 14, 2011 deadline that had been ordered by the judges, and also why they had refused to accept service of the prosecution’s final trial brief.

“Mr. Taylor has provided us with written instructions that we are not to file a final trial brief until such a time as decisions are reached on all outstanding motions and appeals,” Mr. Griffiths told the court yesterday at the opening of the status conference.

“This is not meant to be a delaying tactic. It is a point, in our submission, of fundamental principle,” Mr. Griffiths added.

When asked by the Presiding Judge of the Trial Chamber, Justice Teresa Doherty, whether it is the intention of the defense team to submit a final trial brief, Mr. Griffiths responded that “we do intend to file a final brief, circumstances permitting.”

Mr. Griffiths explained that at the time that the Court made an order for final briefs to be submitted by all parties on January 14, 2011, certain matters which must be addressed by the Court had not arisen. These matters, Mr. Griffiths said, are important in order to decide “on all the issues to include in [the defense] final brief.”

“At the time the order was made, we did not know, for example, about the WikiLeaks cables which implicated the very integrity of the Prosecution and the Court,” Mr. Griffiths said.

On why the defense had refused to accept service of the prosecution’s final brief, Mr. Griffiths told the court, “We do not want to be accused in due course of tailoring our final brief, no pun intended, based on the contents of the Prosecution’s submissions. We want our submissions to stand alone in their own right.”

When asked to respond to the submissions made by the defense, Chief Prosecutor Brenda J. Hollis told the Court that the “accused has made a deliberate election not to file a final trial brief.”

Ms. Hollis added that to allow the accused to file final briefs only when conditions are appropriate for him will, “in effect, let him sit in the middle of the courtroom and run the trial.”

“He has no such right. No accused has such a right,” Ms. Hollis added.

Mr. Griffiths on his part responded, “Mr. Taylor is not seeking to control these proceedings. He is seeking, instead, to get a fair trial.”

The judges adjourned briefly to deliberate on the matter. When court resumed, the judges issued a majority ruling, with Justice Julia Sebutinde dissenting.

In the ruling, which did not say in clear terms whether and when the defense were to file their final brief, the judges, by majority said, “The majority of the Trial Chamber, Justice Sebutinde dissenting, consider that they have not heard submissions that causes the Trial Chamber to review or amend the original orders rendered on 22 October 2010.”

The order of October 22, 2010 required all parties to submit final trial briefs by January 14, 2011.

The judges added, “The outstanding appeals and motions referred to were filed after the Defence closed its case, at a time when the Trial Chamber expected that the Defence would be preparing its final brief.”

“The decisions on outstanding motions and appeals may call for further orders to be made in relation to the presentation of the Defence case and in the interests of a fair trial. But the Trial Chamber emphasises that any such orders will be made by the Trial Chamber and not by Mr Taylor. Mr Taylor does not have the option of obeying or disobeying court orders as he sees fit,” the judges added.

In her dissenting opinion, Justice Sebutinde said, “For me, it would not be fair to ask the defendant to wrap up his defence when there are issues on the table of the judges that we have not been able to deal with yet. In other words, the ball is in the court – is in the court of the Court, so to speak.”

“In my view, it is not unreasonable for Mr Taylor to say to the judges, ‘I will file a trial brief as soon as you give me the judgments or the decisions that I’m waiting for.’ On the other hand, what we are saying to Mr Taylor is, ‘File a piecemeal final brief in your defence,'” she added.

The Presiding Judge, Justice Doherty, then adjourned proceedings until February 8, 2011 when closing arguments will commence.


  1. Again, this court has turned into a RACIAL GAME!!!!!.

    What is wrong with settling outstanding matters before the FINAL CLOSE?? Can the defense REOPEN her case if evidences come into play while the investigations of the court and US gov’t on going???

  2. Those other two judges aside from Sebutinde are certainly acting under ‘influence’. Shameless judges, from all indications they have made up their minds already! Bigots!

  3. These white judges are one sided and mind set. All they care is Mr. Taylor guilt, but let’s how far they can go with this.

    1. Harris Johnson also need to understand that majority of the Judges agreed:”The decisions on outstanding motions and appeals may call for further orders to be made in relation to the presentation of the Defence case and in the interests of a fair trial. But the Trial Chamber emphasises that any such orders will be made by the Trial Chamber and not by Mr Taylor. Mr Taylor does not have the option of obeying or disobeying court orders as he sees fit,” the judges agreed.
      Therefore, all these cries of foul and so on..amounts to nothing! Taylor cannot run this court as he did the Supreme court of Liberia! Even in the Great United States Of America, no one over-ules the decisions taken by the court, especially when Judges take a vote. And because Judge Sebutinde decerns does not mean injustice has been done to taylor. Wow, you guys have no knowledge of justice other wise you would stop all these petite accusations of bigotry!

        1. Fallah,

          What you and this inherently flawed court can not explain to us, since you claimed that we have no knowledge of justice, is where in the world that the prosecution closes its case and yet requests to bring in fresh evidence and brand new witness or witnesses? It happened in this court. Why can’t the same standard of measurement be applied to the defense if President Taylor fair trial rights must be respected and guaranteed? Why can’t the outstanding motions, appeals, and the “wikileak” evidence exposing the diabolical intent of the sponsors of this court be heard and on record? Please answer me boss.

        2. Ken,

          These guys are not interested in finding the truth. If they were, the would not have used the illegal means to get this innocent man. Fallah is not stupid. None of us for a moment should believe he is dumb. The problem here he doesn’t have the facts on his side to advance and accomplish his desired impact and outcome. Logically, what he is saying about majority rule in rendering a decision in the court of law is true. But that’s not the issue here. What we are saying is the prosecution was given similar immunities of reopening and bringing in fresh evidence, even though they had already closed their case. More time was given to them. Why can’t the same standard of measurement be applicable to the defense, if this innocent man fair trial right must be guaranteed?

          I understand where you are coming from when you say Fallah is making sense for once. But that’s not the issue of majority rule, instead, it is about fair play at the equilibrium point.

        3. Jose Rodriguez,
          I do not know of any motions by the defense to bringing in fresh evidence in Mr. Taylor case as the prosecution did when it called Ms. Campbell others. You cannot compare it to the WikiLeaks cable. The “WikiLeaks cable” center around the motion the defense file for the Trial Chamber to investigated the Prosecution and the SLSC for misconduct, which was dismissed by the Trial Chamber and Appeal Chamber. The WikiLeaks cable is a very good tool to use if Mr. Taylor is “convicted” to have that conviction overturns by the Appeal Chamber. Read the Appeal Chamber. “Decision on public Defense notice of appeal and submissions regarding the decision on the Defense motion requesting an investigation into contempt of court by the Office of the Prosecutor and its investigators. 21 January 2011.” Mr. Taylor defense team is very good. They know what has happened what will happen and what could happen.

          Mr. Rodriguez, you seem to believe deep down that Mr. Taylor is innocent the SLSC is flaw, Mr. Taylor will be convicted, want the trial stop and Mr. Taylor release. There is nothing wrong with that, however, Mr. Rodriguez it is not that simple and it just do not work that way.

          As for as what jfallahmenjor stated that I said he is for once “making sense” was his statements “Therefore, all these cries of foul and so on..amounts to nothing!….
          because Judge Sebutinde decerns does not mean injustice has been done to taylor…stop all these petite accusations of bigotry!”

        4. Ken,
          Sorry brother, but this comment of Fallah makes no sence. I mean it is absolutely silly for he and these judges to, out their right minds ever ever, think that mr. Taylor is trying to controll the court. Like Jose, rightly stated, should we say that, at some point the prosecution was controlling the court? Look brothers lets put right where it belongs. What are they afraid of if they are not being racist, unfair or somethingelse. They can do anything they want anyway, so whats all of this premature, ignorant perdisposition of justice is about..PLEASE..

      1. 1-23-2-2011
        @ Fallah
        Refrain(Stop) speaking on things you know nothing about. In the US there is recourse for infair or racially motivated court decisions.

        1. Dr. Elvis Tooterhead Jr,
          Kindly rephrase some of your comments. Some of the phrases in your post are not appropriate for the blog. If you can kindly rephrase, i’ll be glad to approve them.

  4. If this was in the case or interest of the Prosecutor, automatically this would have been accepted. We saw that when they ( Prosecutor ) requested the reopening of their case for new witnesses to appear. Now it in the case of the defend, they are saying the defend closed their case. What a mockery of justice!!!!!!!

    1. Again Judge Sebutinde is playing the role of Pontius Pilate. In Matthew, Pilate washes his hands of Jesus and reluctantly sends Jesus to his death. Mark, Pilate depicting Jesus as innocent of plotting against Rome, portrays Pilate as extremely reluctant to execute Jesus, blaming the Jewish priestly hierarchy for his death.

      In her dissenting opinion, Justice Sebutinde said, ”For me, it would not be fair to ask the defendant to wrap up his defence when there are issues on the table of the judges that we have not been able to deal with yet. In other words, the ball is in the court – is in the court of the Court, so to speak.”


      1. Big B, Jose, Cousin4,
        You got it guys. well Said; I think this is one of dark moments for the defence, but the power of the lord will prevail…

  5. Even if Mr. Taylor is found guilty, the defense has a boatload of evidence to have the verdict overturned. The defense does have strong evidence that the SLSC is corrupted or tainted something the Appeal Court cannot deny. On the other hand, if Mr. Taylor is found not guilty what does the prosecution have to appeal? I think we should wait for the verdict before pulling the race card out. The Judges heard the same evidence against Mr. Taylor and has set on one other SLSC trial. Just because the SLSC may have been tainted, do not mean those Judges are tainted. Some of you are putting the buggy before the horse. There is no guilty or not guilty for Mr. Taylor until the Judges said so. No one knows how at this time what judge will go which way. Dissenting opinions by Justice Sebutinde has been on the rules of the court and not on the evidence that was presented in this case.

    1. Ken,
      Mr Taylor chance of walking is in this court…..the Court of Appeal will NOT over turn a guilty verdict. Looking at the landscape, I think Mr. Taylor will be going to jail on a POLITICAL verdict.

      1. Noko4,


        1. None sense Rodriguez! Do not throw the towel in yet..follow your gut- feelings that taylor is innocent and never did antthing wrong to anyone, and including thousands of Liberians in exile today! Silly whining and tantruming! You can go to blazes and burn if that will satisfy your anger that there is light at the end of the tunnel for victims of taylor’s cruelty!

        2. Jose Rodriguez,
          Mr. Taylor trial is not over by know mean. The important things about this trial or any trial has just begun. Don’t be so quick to give up the faith. I know Mr. Taylor has not, he is still fighting.

        3. General Fix it, Jose,

          All is not yet lost, let’s keep hope alive. Malcolm X, Nelson Mandela, Kweme Nkrumah, Dr. M. L. King… endured more suffering from the hands of the “DEVILS” than what President Taylor will ever endure. People of justice shouldn’t allow anything to deter, divide or make us lose hope. Because if we do, that’s exactly what the “DEVILS” wants to see happened. They want to see us divided. We should come together stronger now then ever.

          The youth of Africa is watching, and if President Taylor is found guilty because of his color of his skin, there are going to be many more Taylor to come.

          Ellen is honorable women, so is Justice Lussick, Dohertyy, Rapp, and Linda are honorable people. But the evil that man dose will surely live after him.



      2. I do not think the SLSC is the right place for a “political verdict”. The verdict in this case will be base on evidences to the crimes committed. The ICJ will not allow this hybrid court (SLSC) of their to cause the International Court Justice System to be tainted or corrupted. I think if Mr. Taylor is found guilty, his chance of walking free from this, will come after a guilty verdict is appeal base on what the Defense has which is alot.

      3. Noko4,
        Mr. Taylor chance of walking in this Court, the Trial Chamber is 50/50. The Court of Appeal has not over turn a guilty verdict for the RUF, AFRC and CDF is because those people was directly responsible and committed the crimes in Sierra Leone that they were charge. No matter what their reason were. The evidences against them was not in question, yes they did it. Mr. Taylor is a different case and things about the SLSC have come forward that was not present in the other trials.

        1. Ken,
          I understand and hope that’s so but I do remember Mr. Griffith having problem with other levels of this court….he too feels Mr. Taylor BEST bet is this level of the court. But will HOPE.

        2. Noko4,
          Yes, Mr. Griffiths did express same concern about the Appeal Chamber not overturning any convictions however, this was before the WikiLeaks cable. The WikiLeaks cable proves that Mr. Taylor is on trial for crimes committed in Sierra Leone were to keep him out of Liberia. The cable also proves that the U.S. will go to any links to make that happen including tamping with the SLSC. The Prosecution has not produced any solid evidence that Mr. Taylor was part of a JCE with the RUF. If Mr. Taylor is convict, which I do not believe he will be, the Appeal Chamber will have no recourse but to overturn the conviction.

          The U.S Ambassador to Liberia, felt very strongly that Mr. Taylor is going to be found not guilty to the point that she suggest to Rapp that other ways be implored even before the judges has make their decisions, to keep Mr. Taylor out of Liberia. The U.S Ambassador to Liberia talk of all the bad things going on in Liberia, blame then on Mr. Taylor supports and family and in the same breath stated there was not evidences to prove it. The U.S Ambassador said Mr. Taylor could be put on trial in the U.S. court for wirer fraud, which most likely there is no proof of that either. I believe the reason Mr. Griffiths is making the WikiLeaks cable an issue now in the Trial Chamber, so it be well documented for an appeal in case of a conviction of Mr. Taylor.

  6. Folks,

    We are surrounded by genuine institutional ignorance of this inherently flawed court. These two white judges are not even bothering to put on their masks anymore. Instead, they are just doing it, showing it, and running away with it in open daylight their biased remorse against this innocent man. Same case, two different standards. UNBELIEVABLE!! I knew these two white judges would have behaved in a way that they are acting up now, but I did not know the extent to which they would have gone and when. What these judges can not explain is why they are not interested in resolving these outstanding motions and appeals, especially with the overwhelming evidence of foreign interference by America and others. More importantly, if this inherently flawed court can allow the prosecution to reopen its FAKE CASE, by bringing in fresh evidence and Super Model Naomi Campbell, why can’t the same standard of measurement be applicable to the defense? Folks, I know why. When they allow this to happen, when they grant permission to the defense to bring in the “wikileak” evidence, and the American Ambassador to Liberia, Linda Thomas Greenfield’s statement of apology to the immaculate and long live the queen Ellen, they will be confirming what the rest of the world knows and being saying that this is an international conspiracy led by “Big Countries” to imprison this innocent man. This is not about justice for Sierra Leone. If they permit the defense to do this, which by the way, is the right thing to do, the difference between the prosecution fake evidence of “blood diamond” associated with Naomi Campbell, and the truthful “wikileak” evidence will be terribly annihilating for these “big countries”, this fake case, the prosecution, this inherently flawed court, and above all, the international justice system. So in order to suppress the real true justice, in order to save America from this eminent and disproportionate shame, the court is returning back to its roots of not using evidence to make sound legal judgment, but instead, interested in speculations, they say, third fourth party say, she say, he say, them say, their say, you say I say, and gossip.

    1. 1-23-2011
      If African leaders don’t take a stand against the ICC and SCSL now we have officially entered an era of Modern Day Colonialism.

    2. Lies, Rodreguez! there is no racism in this trial. Taylor did not murder Irish nor Italians, neither did he kill British nor Americans! Why would you think he is on trial for crimes against Whites and therefore being tried impartially? It sounds very imatured to even go this way in thinking about the trial of taylor.Taylor is on trial for alleged crimes against humanity! Period!!!

      1. Fallah,
        It’s the PROCESS, METHOD or STYLE we’re witnessing in this court. A very IMPORTANT leak…..a leak between the US gov’t, the Liberian gov’t and the Court….moreso Fallah, that leak is stating that regardless what the evidences showed, the US gov’t will NOT rest until Mr. Taylor is put away. To compound the problem, Judge Sebutine is been BLAMED for the DELAYS of this court, when the fact is the prosecutors have been the ones asking for OPENs and CLOSEs along the way.

        No Mr. Taylor didn’t kill a SINGLE WHITE man or woman but WHITE HANDS are pulling the strings. Mr Rapp, the former prosecutor, is now the HEAD OF JUSTICE at the State Department…..are you now seeing the link as to why the US gov’t is now looking into keeping Mr. Taylor in JAIL FOREVER and EVER???

        1. Dear Nosirrah,

          Unfortunately, we cannot approve your comment at this time because the second and third sentences do not comply with the website’s policy. We cannot post a statement of fact that individuals have committed crimes unless they have been convicted by a court of law. If you rephrase these sentences, we will then post your comment.

          Thank you.

        2. Noko4
          STOP LYING!!! The NPFL and Taylor were accused of alledgely
          killing the five Catholic nuns in Barnesville in retaliation to Micheal Francis’ reception of Ulimo at the Po river bridge in 1992. They were killed during 1992′s operation Octopus.
          Two of the victims were influential in my life: The late Sis. Shirley Kolmer was my instructor and Principal at my alma mater and the late Sis. Barbara McQuire was also a conflict resolution counselor and instructor. So before you make those blanket statements, please do your research.
          Innocence or guilt is the measure of man’s justice and we all know how flaw that system is. There have been lots of innocent people convicted and lots of guilty people acquitted. It is just about which side presented the best case or strategy. Taylor’s conscience is his judge. Whether he confesses in public as in the courts or during his personal awakening, is his call. Sooner or later, we will find out the verdict of man’s justice. In my opinion, this court has done its job and that is to give second thought or deterrence to would-be warlords.
          All you supporters of Taylor, even if he is acquitted which i don’t think he would, he is not crazy to wage a war anymore because his five years or so hiatus in prison is not something he wants to experience again, so whatever position you had, and had any hope of regaining is highly improbable.

        3. Nosirrah,

          Why don’t you tell Fallah to stop lying since in fact, he was the first to say this innocent man “did not murder Irish nor Italians, neither did he kill British nor Americans!” But you are instead, telling a sound and rational individual like Noko4 to stop lying for regurgiting the same thing that Fallah said first? Unbelievable. Anyways, I know why you can not tell Fallah to stop lying. The answer is simple. He is on your side and Noko4 is on the side of real and true justice. By the way, why are we talking about the five catholic nuns and Liberia in this case? I thought the powers of this world and the Liberia government said Liberia has nothing to do with this case? However though, this case is about Sierra Leone. Nosirrah, if you genuinely think President Taylor committed crimes in Liberia, than join us and advocate for the establishment of war crimes court in Liberia while Ellen is still the president of Liberia. Don’t use the back door way to get at this innocent man.

        4. Nosirrah,
          Let look at your statement and point out a FACT within……ready?? “The NPFL and Taylor were accused of alledgely killing the five Catholic nuns in Barnesville in retaliation to Micheal Francis’ reception of Ulimo at the Po river bridge in 1992”.

          Don’t waste our time trying to find one for there isn’t. “ACCUSED OF ALLEDGELY KILLING” means he did?? I believe that very matter was addressed in this case and Mr. Taylor gave his testimony to that story. Unless you got PROOF please don’t let your emotion rule your day.

          We are want JUSTICE… that is FAIR and JUST!!!! But as we watch, it’s clear that the VERDICT of GUILTY was done long before this case started. The only thang that is messing it up, Mr. Taylor decided to FIGHT.

      2. Ooohhh yeah Fallah,

        Taylor is on trial for crimes against “big white countries.” But these big white countries are using the small black country called Sierra Leone to accentuate their aspiration of greed. Over 90% of the court sponsors are all predominantly white countries, All of the real lead prosecutors starting with David Crane, Stephen Rapp, and Brenda Hollis are all whites from America. Two of the three judges are whites. If this innocent man is found guilty by this hybrid court, he will be imprisoned in a white country. Currently, he is in the custody of a white country. The trial is being held in a white country. What more evident do you need to know this is a white court in disguise of seeking justice for Sierra Leone?

        1. Bravo Rodriguez,

          Well said,pay no heed to Mr Menjor,he is a mere agitator.The thing is we have many good institutions in place which should enable us to deal with human rights and crime against humanity issues in africa.I strongly believe the AU and other regional bodies like the ECOWAS and its equivals,should be seriously looking at creating an African Court of Human Rights and Crimes Against Humanity.Otherwise African leaders will find themselves answering in a western court for crimes committed whilst in power ranging from corruption to human rights abuse,eventhough by and large they may have been corrupted by them through business trickeries .


      3. amen to thatone..that is one of the only true staements i have heard on thsi blog.. seem s like every other one i have read is racially motivated.. Geez .. give it a rest here Numbnuts.. (not you) in genera,l i am speaking to these nitwits who are so consumed with htis being a white trial.. nmy goodness.. as you said it is about murder.. color has no bearing in this trial is about a cold calloused killer whose time has come to face judgement.. and man is it going to . God in in control no matter what..Vengeance is mine saith the Lord of Host !! I willrepay.. Payment is due now,..

  7. The blind can this case is going see where. The prosecution was permitted to call additional witnesses i.e. Naomi Campbell etc after closure of their case. They proposed the same argument as Mr. Griffiths has done and were given a favorable ruling. One can only conclude that the majority decision is unfair, biased and a travesty of justice

  8. The repulsive behavior of the two judges, standing on a false characterization of the defense request, to not submit their final closing argument until outstanding substantive legal issues have been resolve, is revulsive to the interest of justice and fair play. The proposition that granting the defense motion would in of itself undermine the court’s legitimacy to control the proceeding is seriously shameful and lacking in basic logical concept.

    More interestingly, such excused, to characterized Mr. Taylor ‘s orders to his defense team to not submit final closing argument, as Mr. Taylor attempting to control the court does not square in with the reality of the court own action when the court granted the prosecution the exact benefit upon the prosecution request to reopened its case. Are these two judges expressly saying that a party to this case which refuses to accept the court’s initial decision and sought review of such decision is attempting and indeed controlling the court?

    Well, if that is the understanding and impression the two judges wants the world to know, then it is already a settled matter in this court that the prosecution is controlling the court. Simply put, on many occasion, the prosecution has requested the court to change its decision, more specifically the issue of allowing the prosecution to reopened its case and bring in new witnesses and fresh evidence. The prosecution asserted the exact arguments that the defense is making. So why the contradiction and unfairness by Justice Lussick and Justice Doherty?

  9. How in the world can Ms. Hollis accuse the defense of filing “final briefs only when conditions are appropriate for him” and “in effect, let him sit in the middle of the courtroom and run the trial.” This is hypocrisy at its best.

    From day one the prosecution has been running the court. The prosecution is not only running the court, but urinating and defecating on the judges’ desk while most of the judges sit and watch. Now things are not going Ms Hollis way she’s running tantrum.

    Ms. Hollis take your marbles and go home.

  10. Hello everyone. It’s been quite a while. My comments on this development tows the same line as most of the reasonable and intelligent people on this site. It is really disgraceful and shameful what is happening in the Hague but all the same the actions of these people is not at all surprising. International justice is soiled.

  11. Dear All,
    Let me take this time to apreciate you all for your excellent opinions and readings about THIS JUSTICE PROCESS. Just few things I would like to bring to our attention: Are people understanding the unfolding of events in this trial? Don’t people see the magnification of the reality of things in this trial? I think Fallah is drawning and so needs a hand. Enlightenment is coming into this process. History will judge us according to our input in this trial.
    finaly, let me say here that the closing of this case this year is a serious factor on the Liberian electons and so it is obvious to see what is happening.
    Don’t we know that some key elements of the Liberian Government are taking more time contemplating on the outcome of this trial instead of doing the peopel’s job.

  12. “Presiding Judge”. It takes a real courage to keep doing the right thing. Anyone of the other Judges could preside the Court proceedings but at the end of this case as it is now, baisedness would have been more clear. So everything was well planned. Let us make his sister Presiding to calm his nerves and show the world the court’s level of determination to be fair in the trial. Three Judges, the majority carry the vote, One Judge Desenting regardless of your knowledge, position and honesty in decision making has nothing to do with the final decision. There is much preasure to cooporate but even if you do, we will understand that you did so on request. I would admonishe that yoiu maintain your integrity and keep on the rails of justices.

    As for the Two, Just a reminder that you are under oath if you really cares about fulfilling your vows to render fair judgement. We are watching as we have been and are listening as well.

    1. Sasco, these are Lawyers appointed and who had taken oath to hold truth, and nothing but the truth! They are not types of Judges you see among African Politicians. We know you support group will cry foul no matter how these judges decide because of the narrow mindedness you have shown all along about fairness whenever the defense screws up. So be it as long we get taylor lock up for life! This man does not deserve to live a free man ever! Too many deaths are blamed on his hands as alleged! He walks free we will hunt him down otherwise! In the cause of the people, the struggle continues…! Aluta continua..!

    1. FINAL BRIEF is exactly what it is, FINAL BRIEF. From my understanding once a party file a FINAL BRIEF it means the party has agreed in totality that there are no outstanding matters i.e., motion, subpoena etc, left to be decided upon by the court.

      What the defense is saying here, fundamentally in all proceedings and to protect the accused of his fair trial rights, prior filling a FINAL BRIEF all pending matters (motions) in the pipeline must be dealt with to enable the defense to tailor her FINAL BRIEF accordingly. Since this court is a KINGAROO court the prudent thing for the court to do is denied defense motions without consideration and applied the JUNGLE JUSTICE ruling. The defense is not refusing to file a FINAL BRIEF, as supposed to the questions put forward by Justice Doherty. Respectfully, Mr. Griffiths told the court the defense is willing to file a FINAL BRIEF, but the defense is not in the “Position” at this time to do so base on the circumstances. It’s the matter of principal. The defense is not trying to run the court as alleged by Ms. Hollis. It’s unethical for the defense to file a FINAL BRIEF while there are pending motions. Therefore, the court must deny defense motions and let’s move on. This trial is far from over. I think something BIG is going is to happen.

      Ms Hollis made a valid argument. But, her argument will only hold water under normal circumstances, when there are no pending motions. Secondly, it’s not unusual for exchange between lawyers and justices. It happens all the times in the US Courts. Unfortunately, this is not US Courts. Whenever, there is an exchange between justices and lawyers it’s about clarification to the rule of law. Unlike, Justice Doherty and Lussick, it was clear they were taking side and Justice Lussick allowed his Samoan temper to get the best of him.

      1. Big B, well sritten
        Can the blogger understand the difference between MACRO AND MICRO? It’s a matter of Law and procedure. Griffith is doing exaclly what he is suppose to do. Represent his client to the best of his ability. Why should Griffith file his FINAL BRIEF when there are outstanding issues? Ms. Hillis, go back to LAW SCHOOL.

        1. Abe & Big B,
          Maybe they just think Mr. Taylor and his team are SILLY, STUPID and DUMB!!!!. They closed their case and asked to REOPEN based on some DREAMS; they even asked the Judges to render DECISIONS on pending matters before they could process to the next witness or stage but now that the same request is done by the defense, they run to their partners on the bench…..A DISGRACEFUL DISGRACE!!

    1. Without a doubt, America is the greatest Country in the World. I love America and I am willing to take up arms any day to defend America from threats if need be.

      However, America can’t be the Police of the World; it’s time for America to reevaluate her foreign policy. America may means well, but historically her good always turn into bad.

  13. Tp Big B and his quote “All is not yet lost, let’s keep hope alive. Malcolm X, Nelson Mandela, Kweme Nkrumah, Dr. M. L. King… endured more suffering from the hands of the “DEVILS” than what President Taylor will ever endure.” Comparing Taylor to these heroes is disgusting and shameful. And no matter what one thinks of this case….lets be fair on the race issue. Who were the victims of this conflict – west africans. Wouldnt they deserve the same measure of justice as the white europeans who were victims of Milosivic? of Tujman? Why is this only viewed from the prism of the “leaders” and not the actual people. Couldnt I argue it “racist” that since they were Sierra Leoenans or Liberians they dont deserve accountability? How is that not actually racism. Make no mistake – protecting elites like Taylor and Gbagbo does NOT put you on the side of Africans. So stop pretending it does. Of course there are politics in this world and if it were up to me the court would have been given resources to go after some of the white diamond dealers as well. But when you say things that the SCSL or ICC is against “Africans”…..that is simply disgraceful and pays absolutely no merit to actual victims and their interests who if I checked last were mostly Africans. You cant sit here on this forum and scream “double standard” when you engage in such a blatant one yourself.

  14. Bundu,

    Nobody is denying the fact that bad things didn’t happen to the people of S.L. and those who are responsible should definitely be brought to justice. The entire noise the pro Taylor people are making, we are asking for a fair trial. Is that too much to ask for?

    Bundu, you and I and others know so far the defense has been given the short end of the stick in this trial. Take for example, the O.J. Simpson case; I believed O.J. murdered Nicole and Ron out of cold blood. The evidence presented by the prosecution in the Nicole and Ron trial had greater bearing than the evidence presented by the prosecution in the Taylor trial. Allegation is easy to make. Anybody can allege, but proving the allegation is what the prosecution has failed to do. I can allege Bundu is a murder (hypothetically) but does that makes Bundu a murder? (Of course not). I will have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that indeed Bundu is a murder.

    To put icing on the cake, according to the Wikileaks cable, Linda, Rapp and Ellen formulated a false report composing the court and acusing justice Sabetinde of a hidden agenda and slowing down the process. This trial is not racial because those who bad things happened to in S.L. were white, you missing the point. It’s believed to be racial because the way in which the trial is been prosecuted.

    Let the chip falls were it may, and let Justice prevail.

  15. I am still not sure how they have gotten “short end”…it is the most highly priced defence team in international law and they have been able to try to challenge prosecution case on all matters (albeit to me clearly unsuccessfully). The evidence presented in comparison to other international criminal trials is overwhelming. Usually cases have 1-2 insiders to connect high level people. In this case they had so many from so many different angles connecting Taylor to Bockarie. Just think…is it just a coincidence that something like 15 witnesses refer to Jungle. Or all the radio operators from so many vantage points. These are just two examples. The issue on wikileaks doesnt even show what people are saying…in fact it shows that trial is independent when you read the whole thing in context. If the US was really going to “fix” the trial, there would have been a guantanamo bay trial with only US authorities and different rules of evidence. This has been remarkably fair trial in which prosecution has been held to higher standard on almost every issue, especially exhibits, than any preceding trial in the tribunals.

    1. Bundu,

      It’s your opinion. If you don’t know how the defense has been giving the short end of the stick in this trial, I fully understand that. I don’t expect you to know. But, if you revised your question and asked me a direct question how is the defense is given the short end of the stick in this trial? You are granting me the permission to tell you how. Without a doubt, I’ll tell you how from the day of arrest to where we are now.

      Until then, I rest my CASE.

      P/s. As I said it’s your opinion, however, as a matter of principal the defense is entitle to the same high power lawyers as the prosecution. “Equal arms”

  16. Folks,

    I somewhat admire the civility and respect of the trajectory the dialogues have taken over several months. I salute the site monitors for encouraging dialectic tension but also mitigating inflammation. Also, I salute folks like the Nokos, Jose, jfallahmenjor, the new comer, Sekou, and all others for finding the will and strength to slowly soften the rash rhetoric! Folks, I am loving this.

    That said, it looks like justice is soon to be rendered in this litigation. Let me flesh this out a little as I have done in the past. Caution! Justice could denote acquittal or guilt. Justice here carries a dualistic denotation. If acquitted, CT might make a comeback in Liberia. He might perhaps return not a politician but a prudent law abiding citizen. He might look around and observe with pity corruption and greed at its zenith. He might struggle with the question: how can I use my intellect to help this nation. He might then write a memoir to tell his story. His memoir might inspire young Liberians to nation building, healing, and love of country. His memoir might prompt a revolution. No! Not a militaristic revolution but an intellectual revolution against the disease of illiteracy which dramatically fueled the war and caused a massive disservice to Liberia. However, if guilty, he might resign himself to a more somber reflection in an unfriendly solitary cubicle. There, he might have ample time to put his life in retrospect. He might revisit his past and reconcile it with his presence. There, he might wrestle with the question: how did I get here? Either way, justice will be served.

    Thus, as this case is winding down and a verdict is in the offing, I select, like some of you have done in the past, to reenter this dialectic minefield but with measured caution.

    As always, Peace!

    1. Noko 7, turned Davenport,

      I think your piece is an outstanding one. To me, fair and balance. Your post softens my rhetoric a little. To be quite honest, when I first saw your writing, without even reading, I was about to respond to every line of yours. But when I took my time and read, I saw genuine reasonings. Again, thank you for this piece. This is what the national government of Liberia is to do. Tune down the rhetoric, match their rhetoric with reality, and reconcile the country in a way that will reflect the past, present and future.

      1. Jose;
        Don’t trust trust Davenport too much. Remember he was NOKO7, now turned Davenport. Might be liverport or freeport tomorrow. Lets see what his next three posts will look like. This guy is still a good friend of Fallah Menjor..

        1. Noko5,

          Don’t kill me with laughter. I just can’t stop laughing at all your ports. Starting with liverport, freeport, and davenport. Anyways, I hear your advise. I will not trust him. But again pekin, he could be a changed man who has seen the light. You never know.

        2. Noko,

          My reentry into conversation on CT final days in court is with measured caution. I am certain this came across in my post. Trust! Oh no! I am not here to seek trust nor attempt to be in solidarity with a particular school of thought on this case. Direct and cross examinations of witnesses are over. With it went the need for trust and solidarity base on personal passion. What remains now is procedural matters and then judgment. Thus, there is no need for courtship or trust to be our operative language. The matter on hand does not demand that we form caucuses on trust.

          And by the way that relational thing you referred to – noko4, noko5, noko6, and noko7 is comical. If I can conjecture and philosophize, noko6 and noko7 emerged as alternative voices to noko4 and noko5 when time and condition demanded it. It was like an antithetical (here I mean thematically, not hostility) relationship between the nokos pseudonymity. Notwithstanding, the nokos, I remembered, agreed on several issues.

          Also, by the way, Jose, with whom I had a number of stimulating conversations, is a fine thinker. From his postings, I and many others formulated an image of an individual who expressed his views forcefully and with immeasurable passion. As a visitor on this site, I oftentimes admired Jose’s passion but countered his forceful tactics. I respected him and he, I believe, respected me. We have since moved on to other meaningful matters.

          Again, I return with measured caution not to a regular and impulsive posting as it could potentially hone my personal prejudices and distract my focus. I return to share my thoughts on the judges’ decision but with measured caution.


        1. Noko 7 turned Davenport,

          Are you ready to join bnker and Jose Rodriguez in doing the traditional Bassa thing of swallowing “Dumb-boy” in Grand Bassa County?

  17. I’m with those who reason with Mr. Griffiths on his this ground. Leaving matters covered on the desk will be buying a big in the bag. Within the court of law, every element associating with the case process MUST be addressed before any conclusion is met. Put the pig out; let see if this deal is right. The Judges know it has virus that’ll kill them that’s while they can’t afford to touch the territory Mr. Griffiths wants. Well, let just say the snake will have its tongue split into branches for trying to eat the snail on the rock.

    1. Aimer,

      WOW! this is deep “Well, let just say the snake will have its tongue split into branches for trying to eat the snail on the rock.” can you please break it down brother. Lol.

  18. Big B,

    You don’t necessarily have to go back all the way to the illegal arrest of this innocent man through international conspiracy in responding to Bundu flaw assertion. Just point to the reopening of their case and the denial of their own witness, Super Model Naomi Campbell by lead prosecutor, Brenda Hollis. More importantly, the Appeal Chamber has said to the trial chamber that President Taylor fair trial rights will be violated if they don’t grant the defense motion and resolve other outstanding issues. More importantly, the prosecution has not responded to the defense motion. So on what moral and legal grounds these two white judges based their decision on and not violate the fair trial rights of the accused? Big B, this is a moment of truth for this inherently flawed court. The Appeal Chamber has looked through the looking glass and is trying to reinvent and restore lost credibility. For me, I still don’t trust them. I am counting on them to do the right thing at all times.

    1. Jose Rodriguez,
      I am glad that you have calm down and have readdressed you think about this trial. You being a passionate supporter of Mr. Taylor, let me give you a few words of comfort. Mr. Taylor will not be convict OR no conviction will stand.

  19. Jose Rodriquez,
    I have on record on this site written in favor of a war crimes court for Liberia. I remembered the statement by Ellen on BBC in 1990 and personally, i have gotten past that. i believe in forgiveness provided the perpertrator shows remorse and change. The Liberian people give Taylor the benefit of the doubt and he was catastrophic, but on the other hand, Ellen is making some progress in Liberia and that was all the Liberian people expected of Taylor. I really don’t care whether Taylor is prosecuted for crimes in Liberia or Sierra Leone, so long he is held accountable for the wars. Whether Taylor’s involvement in Sierra Leone is outside the indictment does not change the allegation that he had a part in the Sierra Leonean crisis.

    I never imagined Taylor being a prisoner; I thought he promised to fight to the death? What a coward!!!

    I chose to leave Fallah’s error alone because we are on the same team. We stick together. I don’t see or read that you guys on the other side are ridiculing each other. The fact of the matter is Fallah committed an error, but Noko4 lied because he knew the facts and chose to misrepresent it. You know fully well, Fallah will never hide nor try to diminish Taylor’s role.

    1. Nosirrah,
      “The NPFL and Taylor were accused of alledgely
      killing the five Catholic nuns in Barnesville in retaliation to Micheal Francis’ reception of Ulimo at the Po river bridge in 1992.” Can you point out a FACTUAL FACT???

      You see Nosirrah, “ACCUSED OF ALLEDGELY KILLING” means he did it or someone thinks or believes he did?? Todate, no one has come forward with any SOLID PROOF he did, so until I hear that PROOF under oath, I will still say he didn’t killed a SINGLE WHITE PERSON.

      This case has told us alot about the Say family……THEY SAY, HE SAY, SHE SAY and their granddad, Mr. HEAR SAY…..

      1. Noko4,

        Very soon the verdict in this case will be handed down and i will be okay with whatever it is. What the world has demonstrated to Taylor is that there is the “rule of law”, of which he and several of you decided to ignore. Tunisia is a prime example that maintained civil demonstrations works and the casualties are limited compare to full scale military war. Eventhough, i would prefer this change of leadership throught the ballot box, but in extreme cases, demonstrations are okay.

        Noko, you can now evoke jurisprudence, when in fact Taylor and the NPFL resulted to jungle justice,how come he did not use the judicial process to change regime? What an irony!!! If Taylor is convicted, he goes to prison and if he is acquitted, he comes back to Liberia and enjoy the peace and tranquility he denied millions.

        You(Noko4), NPFL, Taylor and his defense team can deny everything on judicial technicality, but you and i know what happened in the west African subregion.

        1. Nosirrah,
          Why are you jumping??? You gave me a CLAIM about Mr. Taylor killing WHITE PEOPLE…I showed you very own words and you come back with I don’t believe in the RULE OF LAW??? Chay!!! To add Nosirrah, this WHITE NUNS issue was put to Mr. Taylor by the prosecutors, they too didn’t provide us ANYTHING evidence except HEARSAY.

          No I don’t know what happened; like the judges, I was not in Africa to know but baseing my judgement on the evidences introduced in the Hague and not on the streets of Monrovia or Freetown.

          Maybe you are CONFUSE…..this case is about Sierra Leone and not Liberia….No one from NPFL apart from Mr. Taylor is on trial. The prosecutors even brought witnesses from NPFL to testify against Mr; Taylor. You want an example??? Pres. Moses Blah….the HIGHEST INSIDER with NPFL and guess what, he told the court what Mr. Taylor has along been saying……FACTS!!!

    2. Nosirrah,

      If you truly believe what you wrote by making this statement “I never imagined Taylor being a prisoner; I thought he promised to fight to the death? What a coward!!!” than you don’t know the powers of America and Great Britain. These two countries are so powerful to an extent that they can remove and imprison leaders especially weak ones like Liberia, Iraq, and etc. So President Taylor imprisonment by these “big countries” should not be news, except to someone like you who I think is pretending not to know the powers of this corrupt war.

      1. Jose Rodriquez,
        That is why Taylor should have began with, Permitted by Britain and United States, i will do X Y and Z. I still retained that he is a coward. Grand Father of the late Sekou Toure, Samory Toure resisted French coloniazation of Guinea and he fought them for every inch of Guinean land regardless of the French branding Samory Toure a terrorist.

        1. Nosirrah,
          Please don’t make me FART!!!! So Mr. Taylor was to fight…who??? Was he in war with the Americans and Britishs??? Was Liberia been colonized by any of those two countries when Mr. Taylor was in power to fight them??

          Sometimes I wonder….really look at your reason why you called him “A COWARD” and tell me it makes SENSIBLE SENSE.

  20. Did you guys read the dissenting opinion from the appeal chamber. That Judge is a genius, he addresses the fundamental problem with the prosecution case-presenting discredited witnesses. Indeed, this political trial has failed international justice.

    Leave Mr. Taylor free; that should not be difficult to do. After all, there are still political instability going on all over Africa.

  21. Jose,
    Old noko7, ( Davenport) is trying to cross carpet. He must pay some fines before his virtaully indirect application can be looked at. I don’t care what kind of big book he writes here…He also has yet to state the reason for changing from noko7 to what soever he is now…He being noko7 was not a mistake.

  22. The crimes committed by forces loyal to Charles Taylor and other leaders during the Liberian and Sierra Leone civil wars remain seared in Africa’s consciousness. In the hearts of the people he is guilty as charged; but this is about justice, not vengeance. Taylor and his victims deserve a fair hearing; due process, whether in an African or international court of law, and whether delivered according to Muslim, traditional or western statutes, must be one of the benchmarks for the African century.

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