By: The Pen
The former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Liberia on Tuesday, July 5, 2023, represented herself in the case regarding the murdering of her own daughter in their Breweville residence on February 22, 2023.
In the Motion to Bail filed to the court by Cllr. Gloria Musu Scott lawyers; she was seeing arguing on behalf of her family members and herself at Criminal Court “A” at the Temple of Justice in Monrovia as she joined her legal team.
Throughout her argument before the Judge, she resisted that the Grand Jury of Montserrado County who indicted them as defendants were not in sitting to draw the indictment.
Typically, the former Chief Justice stressed on the issue of the Writ of Arrest that placed her along with her family members behind bars; stating that the arrest is empty and does not have any substantive prove in it, likewise, the indictment.
According to Cllr. Scott, state prosecutors do not suffer anything in producing what they used before the Special Grand Jury of Montserrado County as evidence to indict them as defendants; adding that, if she is serve with what they are relying on as evidence to prosecute her, it won’t cause any harm to the Government as prosecutors.
Likewise, the former Chief Justice is requesting all pieces of evidence that state prosecutors’ is depending on; including autopsy report, police charge sheet, statements, witness’s testimony, murder weapon if any, medical report and other necessary document.
Cllr. Scott relied on Article 21(f) of the 1986 Constitution “Every person arrested or detained shall be formally charged and presented before a court of competent jurisdiction within forty-eight hours. Should the court determine the existence of a prima facie case against the accused, it shall issue a formal writ of arrest setting out the charge or charges and shall provide for a speedy trial. There shall be no preventive detention.” She prayed Judge Roosevelt Z. Willie to sustain the arguments of the Government and ask for all documents regarding her prosecution.
The Government of Liberia in resistance argued that the motion to bail filed the defendants was premature and must be denied.
Prosecution relied on Article 21(d)(i) which provides that while it is true that all crimes should be billable, there is a proposition clause which says that “unless the crime being charged against the defendants or the accuse s grave or capital” then that the accuse person should not be bail.
Moreover, prosecution said the proposition of the constitution applies to Cllr. Scott as well irrespective of her former and present status.
Therefore; Judge Willie denied the defendant’s Motion to Admit to Bail and asked state prosecutors to prove beyond all reasonable doubt the guilt of the defendants as required by law to be shown when the case commences.
Judge Willie’s decision relied on Article 21(d) (i) which provides that “all accused persons shall be billable upon their personal recognizance or by sufficient sureties depending on the gravity of crime unless crimes of capital offenses or grave offenses as defined.
With that, defense lawyers took an exception and announced an appeal to the Supreme Court regarding the ruling.
Meanwhile, Judge Willie granted the defendants the Motion for Discovery and ruled that the Government of Liberia produce all piece of evidence they have to prosecute the defendants on July 5, 2023.
Based upon that, state prosecutors took an exception and give notice that they will take advantage of the laws controlling.
Recently, the indictment of felonious crimes drawn against the defendants was countered by lawyers representing Cllr. Scott to be bail due to the weight of the evidence produce to the Grand Jury of Montserrado County; as such, the defendants requested the court to grant their clients’ Motion to Bail.
The former Chief Justice submitted that they are the ones indicted by the Liberian Government for the alleged commission of the crimes of Murder, Criminal Conspiracy and Making False Alarms to Law Enforcement Officials on June 23, 2023, following the issuance and arrest of them on June 22, 2023 on a Magisterial Writ and incarcerated to the Monrovia Central Prison.
The defendants’ seven counts motion through their lawyers submitted that based on the content and narrative of the indictment they are entitled to bail pursuant to the Criminal Procedure Law, Chapter 1, Subsection 13.1, captioned ‘Right to Bail”. Under the law referenced, it is provided that all crimes are bailable especially when the proof is not evident and the presumption is not great.
Cllr. Scott averred that in the instant case before the Judge of Criminal Court “A” which the indictment on its very face and contents demonstrate that prove is not evident and presumption not great. For instance, the indictment charged the Defendants for the alleged commission of Murder collectively, said indictment further alleged ‘that an instrument believed to be a knife’ was used but did not succinctly indicate as to who was the actual person among the four (4) that committed the murder. Also, our Civil Procedure Law, Title 1, LCLR, under Provisional Remedies in Chapter 7. Subchapter C. Arrest $ 7.4S. Release because of privilege or lack of grounds and ş 7.46 Bail; release from custody.
By: The Pen