MONROVIA-Monrovia City Court Magistrate, Jorma Jallah has ordered the re-arrest of Emmanuel Gonquoi and others for failing to adhere to section 2.4 of the criminal procedural law.
Section 2.4 of the criminal procedural law requires a defendant to be present in court at every state of the trial failure to do, so constitutes Bill Jumping as mentioned in section 12.6 of the penal code.
Magistrate Jallah’s decision to have Gonquoi and his associates re-arrested comes as a result of a submission made by one of counsels for prosecution in person of Cllr. Sayma Syrenius Cephas informing the court about the absence of the defendants in court as well as preying that honorable court to have them re-arrested.
Cllr. Cephas at the cord of the case this Monday, August 16, 2021 preyed the court to set aside the bond filed by the defendants and have them re-arrested for their absence in court.
The state lawyer cited sections 25.5, 25.6, 25.4 and 12.6 of the penal code and section 2,4 of the criminal procedural law as his reliance.
In resistance, defendants counsel, Jimmy Bombo pleaded with the court to suppress the submission made by the state on grounds that the Solicitor General misinformed the court relative to the law cited.
According to Cllr. Bombo section 2.4 of the criminal procedural law applys to ongoing trial, but what is before the court is a motion, as such, there is no need for the defendants to be present in court.
He contested that his clients had not been arraigned before the court as such the law is not applicable to them saying. “The state was to arraign our clients first for them to exercise their right to either join issue with the state or not before sparing said submission.”
Cllr. Bombo furthered that the state plea should not be granted as they fail to do the needed.
Having listened to arguments from both parties, Magistrate Jallah granted the submission made by the state and order the sheriffs to have Emmanuel Gonquoi and his colleagues re-arrested and brought before the court to state reason for their absence and why they should not be held in contempt.
Meanwhile, defendants lawyer Cllr. Bombo accepted to the magistrate’s verdict and says they would take advantage of the law.
With the exception, the defendants might not be arrested as instructed by the court until the defendants lawyers exception is looked into in higher court.