Judge To Decide Bond Filed By Former Government Officials
Monrovia – The Presiding Judge of Criminal Court C’ will on today decide the fate of US$2million bond filed by Miata Beyslow, T. Nelson Williams, Steve Flahn Paye, Aaron Wheagar, Aminata and Sons former and present government officials of the Liberian government.
Currently Defendant Beyslow is working as chair of the Board of Directors of the National Social Security and Welfare Corporation (NASSCORP) while Flahn-Paye is working at the Ministry of Commerce.
The court heard legal argument in the US$2 million bond filed by and following the indictment drawn against them by the state through the LACC.
The Liberia Anti-Corruption commission in its indictment stated that the defendants intended to deprive the government and people of Liberia of the proceeds from the sale of petroleum products valued at US$13,083,350 donated by the Japanese Government for economic and social development efforts.
“The defendants did knowingly, feloniously, purposely, criminally, maliciously, wilfully, intentionally steal, pilfer, take and carry away, exercise unauthorized control over and converted the total amount of US$5,764,110.84 for their use and benefit or the use of the other under various schemes and thereby committed the felonious crimes of economic sabotage, misapplication of entrusted property, criminal conspiracy and criminal facilitation”, the indictment further stated.
The defendants are charged for allegedly violating chapter 25, sub-chapter “F” (Economic Sabotage), section 15.80 (a), (b) and (c), section 15.81 (a, b and c) and section 15.82 (a b and c), section 15.56 (misapplication of entrusted property) and chapter 10, section 10.2 (Criminal Facilitation) and 10.4 (Criminal conspiracy) of the Penal Law of the Republic of Liberia.
Under Chapter 15, sub-section F, a person commits the crime of Economic sabotage when such person knowingly conspires or colludes to defraud the Government of Liberia; knowingly makes an opportunity for any person to defraud the Government of Liberia by another and does or omit or does any act with the intent to enable another to defraud the Government of Liberia.
The hearing of the US$2 million bond followed the prosecution lawyers’ motion of exception that the bond posted by the defendants is a product of misrepresentation, misinformation, and dishonesty only intended to evade the laws controlling under such cases and to wilfully and intentionally mislead the court thereby bringing it to public disrepute.
The state furthered that the Accident and Casualty Insurance Company serving as surety on defendants bail bond has not shown to the satisfaction of the court any legal authority and or evidence that it has the capacity and ability to withstand, undertake and cover the obligation it has undertaken to perform as surety under defendants bail bond.
“The insurance license, tax clearance business registration certificate, restated article of incorporation and independent Auditor’s report and financial statement for the year 2014 attached to the criminal appearance bond are not sufficient to show that the insurance company has the capacity and ability to perform the obligations it has undertaken in the criminal appearance bond”, declared the State.
In count 3, the state indicated that the only instrument that makes reference to ACICO’s financial status if any, is it 2014 independent auditor’s report and financial statement for the year ended December 31, 2014.
Prior to the hearing prosecution lawyers requested a subpoena for the Central Bank of Liberia to authenticate, and verify the certification of the Accident and Casualty Insurance Company assets that filed the criminal appearance bond for the defendants.
The prosecution previously begged the court to take judicial notice of the exception that was taken following the defendants filing their criminal appearance bond to the court.
When the bond was filed a notice of withdrawal of their justification of the bond and an amended motion to justify the surety attached with a Central Bank instrument is currently before the court.
But appearing at the court, the defendants were in full and the Central Bank verified the certification of the Insurance Company. At the same time the insurance company maintains that the bond was valid.