Monrovia – Just days before the state of New York through the City Court of New York Law Department Family Division review the finances of Montserrado County Senator George M. Weah and Meapeh Gono Glay, the mother of his 10-year-old child; in a bid to determine a final agreeable payment for the child’s welfare; lawyers for the football legend have reportedly filed a Motion to Set Aside, challenging an April 22, 2016 ruling in the Newton County Court which ordered the lawmaker to make a US$1,000 monthly payment toward the upkeep of his child in the U.S. State of Georgia.
Under Georgia law, a motion to set aside may be brought to set aside a judgment based upon: (1) Lack of jurisdiction over the person or the subject matter; (2) Fraud, accident, or mistake or the acts of the adverse party unmixed with the negligence or fault of the movant; or (3) A nonamendable defect which appears upon the face of the record or pleadings. Under this paragraph, it is not sufficient that the complaint or other pleading fails to state a claim upon which relief can be granted, but the pleadings must affirmatively show no claim in fact existed.
Attorney Kemay Jackson, lawyer for Mr. Gono Glay told FrontPageAfrica over the weekend that Senator Weah’s lawyers had written the court to challenge Judge Eugene Bentons’s ruling and claiming that Mr. Weah was served out of jurisdiction.
In the April 22, 2016 ruling, Judge Benton ruled:
“The Defendant is the biological father of the minor child, xxxxxxx (name has been deleted to protect the child’s privacy) born in 2005 per the DNA results taken on or about May 1st, 2015. On a temporary basis, the Father shall child support in the amount of US$1,000.00 per month commencing May 1st, 2016 to be paid on the 1st day of each month, and continuing every month thereafter until further order of the court. All other issues shall be reserved for a final hearing. So, ordered this 22 Day of April 2016”
Now Senator Weah, according to Attorney Jackson says, is trying to get out of the US$1,000 monthly payment ordered by the judge and sticking to the US$160.00.
FrontPageAfrica recently reported that Senator Weah on March 2, 2016, hired a lawyer to take in a check of US$160 claiming that he only makes US$1,090 (one thousand ninety dollars) as senator in Liberia and that he has two other minor kids born in 2000 and 2012 and could only afford to pay $US160.
At a warrant hearing last Wednesday, a Newton County Judge, John Degonia, vacated an outstanding warrant of Senator Weah in the child abandonment case filed by Gono Glay due to pleadings from his lawyer, John L. Strauss.
During that proceeding, Senator Weah’s lawyer pleaded that a payment of US$160 US dollars was sent on April 28 for the month’s payment and therefore urged the court to vacate the warrant.
The judge then ruled that since a discovery is being made to determine the actual amount to be paid by the Senator by the New York Law Department Family Court, he would urge all parties to submit to that process in New York.
FrontPageAfrica recently reported that a Child Support hearing will be held on June 28 and the State of New York had asked both Mr. Weah and Gono-Glay to submit their financial affidavits and submit a sworn income affidavit to determine honest payment of support in the ongoing saga.
According to the communication in possession of FrontPageAfrica, the State of Georgia has requested the state of New York through the City Court of New York Law Department Family Division to investigate the finances of Mr. Weah further and effect support and also have him repay arrears for any income based social services the child may have received.
The Newton County Court issued on Senator Weah for failing to pay for child support on April 18, 2016. Under Georgia law, child abandonment is automatically treated as a felony if the non-custodial parent, which would be Mr. Weah in this case, is out of state. And, if found guilty, Mr. Weah could face up to 12 months in prison.
Senator Weah, according to Attorney Jackson is also challenge a notice to appear in the Newton County Court which was served him in Monrovia. That writ in possession of FrontPageAfrica was served by Cllr. Arthur T. Johnson.
Cllr. Johnson in sworn Affidavit of Attestation, sent to the Newton County Court notified the court that Senator Weah had rejected the document when he was served.
Cllr. Johnson wrote:
Personally appeared before me, the undersigned, a duly qualified justice of the Peace for and in Montserrado County, the Republic of Liberia aforesaid, Cllr. Arthur T. Johnson, Counsellor of the Supreme Court Bar of the Republic of Liberia of the Sesay, Johnson and Associates Law Chamber, duly sworn and made oath according to law, disposed as follows:
That Cllr. Arthur Johnson of the Sesay, Johnson and Associates Law Chambers, Broad and Gurley Streets in the City of Monrovia, Montserrado County, Republic of Liberia was retained by Madam Meapeh Gono Glay the plaintiff in an action before the Supreme Court of Newton County, State of Georgia, between Meapeh Gono Glay, Plaintiff versus George M. Weah, Defendant in a Civil Action, File No. 2016CV239-1 to serve the following documents on George M. Weah, Defendant who is presently in the Republic of Liberia: Notice of Hearing, Certificate of Service, Petition for Establishment of a Child Support, and Verfication which case is scheduled for hearing in the Supreme Court of Newton County, State of Georgia on March 14, 2016.
That Cllr. Arthur T. Johnson averred that on March 8, 2016, at 10: 52am to 11:00am at the Capitol Building, National Legislature of Liberia in the Office of George Weah, Senator of Montserrado County, Republic of Liberia, the notice of hearing and an accompanying documents (Notice of Hearing, certificate of Service, Petition for Establishment of Child Support, for the scheduled case between Meapeh Gono Glay vs.
George Manneh Weah, Defendant in the Supreme Court of Newton County, State of Georgia, were personally served on Mr. George M. Weah(Constructive Service) who refused the said document.
That all and singular, the allegations as set forth and contained in the foregoing, Cllr. Arthur T. Johnson averred that they are true and correct to the best of his knowledge and belief, and as to those matter of information therein contained, he believes them to be true and correct.
When contacted on the weekend, Attorney Johnson explained how Senator Weah refused to receive the document when he was served.
Cllr. Johnson says he was hired by Attorney Jackson out of Georgia for the simple task of serving the Senator as was required by the Newton County Court.
Said Cllr. Johnson: “I was retained by the lady (Meapeh Gono-Glay) lawyer, Kemay Jackson. She said that she wanted me to serve Mr. Weah because the court in Georgia demanded that he be served first before the case could proceed. My duty was to serve him which I did and I made it my business to personally encounter him.”
Cllr. Johnson says when he went to Senator Weah’s office at the Capitol Building, he first encountered an old friend and law school colleague, Franco Grimes, who works at the Senator’s office.
“We were in the law school; we were in the same school. I knew a lot of the boys in his (Weah’s) office. He (Franco) went to Weah and informed that I had come to see him but the office was a bit crowded.”
Cllr. Johnson said when Grimes asked him what the nature of his visit was, he said that it was a personal matter and would prefer not to discuss it in front of the crowded office. “I said it was personal and as a matter of courtesy I did not say why out of respect.
I cannot explain in front of your of staff that the Senator’s daughter mother had filed a case against him in America.
He (Franco Grimes) went back to Senator. I remembered all the faces that were in there that day. Franco took me in. there was a boy sitting behind me, there was a girl I remember from Zion College and so I informed the Senator that I had summons and have been asked to submit to him.”
Cllr. Johnson said when he explained to Senator Weah, the lawmaker read the documents and said that his lawyer had told him not to sign any document.
The lawyer said he explained to Senator Weah the ramifications of him not signing for the summons and told him that it will be only proper for him to sign for the document. But the lawyer said, Senator Weah informed him that the case had been dismissed and that the mother of the child was out to get him. “He said he had explained to the girl that he was not making a lot of money and could only afford US$160 dollars.
Cllr. Johnson continued: “I spent almost 30 minutes in Senator Weah’s office that day. I notified him that I had to make my returns which will explain that he had rejected the summons. We even exchanged call cards. He wrote his number on the back and I gave him mine.”
Cllr. Johnson says Attorney Jackson in Georgia suggested to him that he tried to get the civil court to issue a court summons against Senator Weah and gave the court Senator Weah’s number but each time the court tried to reached him, he dodged the court as his aides claimed that he was not in the country.
I knew he was here because I had seen him and the court officer even heard him talking when he went to issue but was told that he was not available.
But having prior notice, the guys in the office kept saying Weah had traveled. He escaped service. I swear under oath he rejected service, the guy Franco Grimes, if he is a real law school student, would attest to that because it is against the law to lie under oath.
FrontPageAfrica was unable to get a response from Mr. Grimes as this story went to Press. An aide in Senator Weah’s office our legislative reporter that Mr. Grimes resigned his position as Public Relations Officer about a month ago and was out of the country. Inbox messages sent to Mr. Grimes Facebook were also not returned.
Attorney Jackson and her client confirmed to FrontPageAfrica that they intend to fight the challenge of the US$1,000 by Senator Weah and his lawyers.
“Mr. Weah’s motion clearly shows that my pursuit of justice is non-political but rather in the interest of my child. Prior to us filing abandonment for the first time in March, Weah gave no moral or financial support for his child in years.
His US$160 mockery payment was only meant to keep him out of jail not to care for his child. If he can file a motion to overturn the judge’s temporary order of a $1000, while he hires lawyers charging $450 an hour, it explains his mind set.
However, his motion is weak and irrelevant because the State of New York will bring the matter to rest on June 28.”