Liberia: Judge Peabody Defies Justice; Refuses to Produce Former GT Bank Manager, Despite Two Weeks Ultimatum
MONROVIA – Victim of the former GT Bank Manager alleged aggravated assault, Edward Freeman, is yet to get justice from the courts at Temple of Justice.
The delay of the case for speedy trial is due to the failure of Monrovia City Court Judge, J. Kennedy Peabody to produce the living body of defendant Ajodeji Bejidi to face trial.
The Monrovia City Court Magistrate seems to be adamant in producing the living body of former GT Bank Liberia Limited Manager, Ajodeji Bejidi after granting him permission to travel despite a Writ of Ne Exeat Republica served on him.
The two weeks ultimatum given him (Judge Peabody) by Criminal Court “A” Judge Roosevelt Z. Willie to produce the living body of defendant Bejidi has since expired. Sadly, the State is also relaxed to follow up on his adherence and inform the court (Court “A”) of his failure to heed to the ultimatum.
Prior to the two weeks’ ultimatum, Magistrate Peabody was sent to jail for his failure to adhere to an ultimatum set by Judge Willie to justify the absence of defendant Bejide. He was later rescued when judges and lawyers pleaded for mercy on his behalf.
Ajodeji Bejidi was charged with aggravated assault when he allegedly threw a calculator in the face of a staff (Edward Freeman), resulting to a cut on his lip.
Despite filing a criminal appearance bond worth US$50,000, the court served a Writ of Ne Exeat Republica on him, which banned him from leaving the country.
However, the Nigerian national left the country reportedly on medical treatment on grounds that he was given permit by Magistrate Peabody.
When contacted on the issue, Judge Willie acknowledged the delay of the case, but attributed it to the failure of state prosecutors to file a bill of information for the court to act.
But Montserrado County Attorney, Cllr. Edwin K. Martin said the case is in court, so he could not speak on the issue.
For his part, Magistrate Peabody said granting defendant Bejidi medical leave falls within his legal purview as a judge, and as such he cannot be held liable.
“The court cannot hold me responsible for implementing the law. If someone is to be held liable, it should the sureties that stood for him,” he said.