The Inquirer is a leading independent daily newspaper published in Liberia, based in Monrovia. It is privately owned with a "good reputation".

Final Argument In Sable Mining Case Monday

The Criminal Court “C” at the Temple of Justice is expected to entertained final arguments in the ongoing Sable Mining Bribery trial involving Senator Varney Sherman and seven others on Monday July 22.
The decision to submit both sides of the case to final argument was based on notices given to the court that both the prosecution and defense have rested with all of the production of their oral and documentary evidences.
Government lawyers rested their side of the production yesterday following the testimony of its 2nd Rebuttal Witness, Aaron H. Aboah who told the court that investigation did take into consideration the process leading to the change of the PPCC Act, Article 75 of 2010.
“Regarding the decision of the amendment, I am not sure whether or not there are defined laws that have to be followed with these agencies named by the counsel, however, there was a committee responsible to review and if you were to refer to the records of this court, Ho. Willie Belleh assisted by Hon. Morris Saytumah were charged with the responsibility along with one Jeff Woods of some international law firm.” The witness explained.
Meanwhile, in his testimony further, the prosecution rebuttal witness capped the testimony of the first rebuttal witness by stating that at no time did the investigation doctor or faked any of those documents; noting that the emails in question were all exchanges that were given to them during the course of the investigations.
Witness Aboah who is a Law Enforcement Officer reiterated that even during their visit to the United Kingdom, the contested emails was among the issues that were discussed and that the Global Witness did confirm that those were the actual emails.
Witness Aboah explained that also in South Africa, the team met with Mr. Henie Van Neikerk who also gave them additional documents regarding the notarization of those emails however, he told the court, “I cannot speak to it as the documents that were given to me in South Africa were not notarized; the notarized documents was handed to the investigation by the late T.C. Gould to include the statement from Klaus Preprix.”
Witness Aboah further said that the issue of the payment made was based on a spreadsheet that was submitted to the Sable Mining Team and that spreadsheet was used to verify the amounts that were paid.
He narrated that the investigation requested the bank statement of Cllr. Sherman and that, that statement also showed the date and amount indicated on the spreadsheet which were also reflected on the bank statement.
“The bank statement did not name those individuals that were listed on the spreadsheet. The return check showed that payments were made to employees of the Sherman and Sherman which the investigation thought that these amounts were far too high to be salaries of employees and that Van Neikerk had confirmed that he had indeed sent money to Liberia,” Witness Aboah further testified.
“The Sable Mining Board of Director, though its Lawyer, (I cannot remember his name) confirmed that they did sent money to Liberia but did not give instruction that said money should be given to government officials,” the rebuttal witness noted.
However, he said the Sable Mining confirmed that the money in question was strictly under the supervision of its Country Director, Henie Van Neikerk stating, “I will like to say that the spreadsheet did show US$75,000 to Hon Tyler while the bank statement showed that the amount was paid as per the spreadsheet, but the return check did not show the amount in question being paid to speaker Tyler.”
As a member of the Special Presidential Taskforce, Witness Aboah said he was charged with the responsibility of supervising the investigation as a Program Manager at the time at LACC whose responsibility was to supervise all investigations and also part of the team that wrote the report and subsequently signed same.
Defendants Varney Sherman, Ernest C.B. Jones, Christopher Onanuga, Alex Tyler, Richard Tolbert, Andrew Groves, Klaus Piprek, Eugene Shannon, Morris Saytumah, and Willie Belleh are facing prosecution on the charges of alleged bribery, economic sabotage, criminal conspiracy, criminal solicitation and criminal facilitation.

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