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Ex-CBL Governor Weeks Justify Criminal Bond

-Terms As Unnecessary Gov’t Exception

By: R. Joyclyn Wea

The Former Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), Milton Weeks has justified the over nine hundred thousand United States dollars bond filed with Criminal Court “C” prior to his (Weeks) release from the Monrovia Central Prison where he was detained recently.

Justifying the bond Wednesday, March 21, 2019, defendant Weeks through his lawyer Abraham Sillah argued that there are sufficient safeguards in place to secure Weeks appearance in court at the start of the trial.

The former CBL Executive is among four other officials of the bank recently indicted by the Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Justice for Economic Sabotage, Criminal Conspiracy, and Criminal Facilitation among others.

They were arrested and detained at the Monrovia central prison prior to their respective release from prison. Defendant Weeks through his councilor was able to file a property value bond in the tone of US$909,319,88.00.

The sufficiency of the bond filed with the Criminal Court “C” was being challenged by the government of Liberia thus praying the court to send the defendant back in prison.

Accordingly, Cllr. Sillah holds that the exceptions to the bond filed by Government lawyers are unnecessary, vexatious and as such it should be set aside with costs.

He further emphasized that the exceptions does not state or provide any legal or statutory grounds for setting aside the bond for his client to be incarcerated at the Monrovia Central Prison (South Beach).

“There is absolutely no law that requires a pre-trial detainee to post a pre-trial bail bond in an amount that “doubles the gain” or doubles the amount alleged in the indictment where it has not been proven by the State as implicated in the crime charged,” Cllr. Sillah added.

He explained that Milton Weeks is entitled to bail as constitution demands, and such right of bail may be realized as a matter of statutory law either upon Weeks personal recognizance or by sufficient sureties which his client has satisfied with the court in order to secure his release.

He further indicated that the 1986 Constitution of Liberia guarantees the inviolable rights of all accused persons to bail “upon their personal recognizance or by sufficient sureties, depending on the gravity” of the offense for which they are charged, prohibits excessive bail, fines and punishment.

Cllr. Sillah also quoted Article 21(d) (i) (ii) of the constitution which states; “All accused persons shall be billable upon their personal recognizance or sufficient sureties depending upon the gravity of the charge, unless charged for capital offense or grave offenses as defined by law”. “Excessive bail shall not be required, excessive fines imposed nor excessive punishment inflicted.”

Counselor Sillah noted that the offenses or crime with which Weeks and others were charged off, are non-capital offenses.

Accordingly; Cllr. Sillah stated that, a writ of Ne-Exeat Republica was issued by the Monrovia City Court which government lawyers are in full force and effect and bans Weeks along with others from travelling out of the bailiwick of the country, complied him to turn over his documents (diplomatic ordinary passports) and should report to the court as directed twice a month.

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