Monrovia – State prosecutors would be compelled to produce all pieces of evidence that led to the indictment of former Chief Justice Gloria Musu Scott, after the Justice in Chambers, Associate Justice Yammie Quiqui Gbeisaye, declined to issue a Writ of Certiorari filed by the prosecution.
By Willie N. Tokpah/0777039231
The prosecution had requested the Chambers Justice to review Civil Law Court Judge Roosevelt Willie’s decision to grant the defense lawyers’ Motion for Discovery before the murder trial officially begins.
Associate Justice Gbeisaye refused the request, citing a lack of merit in the prosecution’s argument for the Writ of Certiorari.
On July 4, Judge Willie granted the defense motion, ordering the prosecution to produce all types of evidence that led to the Grand Jury Montserrado Indictment of the former Chief Justice for Murder, Criminal Conspiracy, and False Information to a Law Enforcement Officer on July 5.
The defense noted that they have not yet received any evidence from the prosecution that led to the said indictment by the Grand Jury of Montserrado County.
As the prosecution failed to comply with the judge’s mandate, the defense team filed a Bill of Information to notify Judge Willie.
Criminal Court ‘A’ Judge ruled that the prosecution’s failure to provide the specified evidence, both material and physical, which the Grand Jury for Montserrado relied on to draw an indictment against Cllr. Scott, may result in legal action.
Cllr. Scott’s lawyers insisted in their bill of information that there is a clear indication that the state prosecutors either lack the evidence or did not use any evidence that led to the indictment against Cllr. Scott and three others.
However, in response to the Defense Bill of Information, state prosecutors filed a Writ of Certiorari before Chambers Justice Gbeisaye on July 5, seeking a review of Judge Willie’s decision to grant the Defense Motion for Discovery.
The prosecution argued that Judge Willie proceeded irregularly and strangely by ordering the Republic of Liberia to present all evidence materials to lawyers representing Cllr. Scott well in advance of the trial, and requested that this be stopped.
According to state lawyers, the defendants were investigated, charged, arrested, and subsequently indicted by a Special Grand Jury of Montserrado at the close of the May Term of Court.
“They were indicted for the commission of the crimes of murder, criminal conspiracy, and false report to Law Enforcement Officers and are currently detained at the Monrovia Central Prison awaiting trial.
The prosecution also objected to the Judge’s decision to grant the Motion for Discovery and inspection of Grand Jury Minutes filed by the defense, requesting all evidence in the possession of the Ministry of Justice related to the case to be made available to the defense.
The prosecution referred to Section 3.8 of the new Judiciary Law and Sections 4.7 and 17.2 of the criminal procedures of Liberia.
State prosecutors informed the Supreme Court that Judge Willie’s decision to grant the defense team’s motion is irregular and lacks a legal foundation, and therefore should be reversed.
However, following a conference held with both prosecution and defense on Wednesday, July 12, Chambers Justice Gbeisaye declined to issue the requested Writ of Certiorari, stating that it lacked merit.