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More Prison Inmates Released In Bong
Date Uploaded: Oct 13, 2014

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More Prison Inmates Released In Bong
By Ballah Kollie, LINA Bong County Correspondent

GBARNGA, October 12 (LINA) – As part of measures to decongest the over-populated Gbarnga Central Prison in Bong County, the Justice Ministry has released 23 inmates from further detention.

The ministry’s decision to release the inmates is in keeping with Section 18.1 of the Criminal Procedure Law of the Republic of Liberia and difficulties incurred in procuring witnesses as well as plan to decongest the prison in the wake of the Ebola outbreak.

The decision is also in support of the ministry’s fight against the spread of the Ebola disease through a new policy that calls for the
summoning of defendants, rather than arrest that automatically lands them in prison.

According to Bong County Attorney C. Flomo Wennah, the motion to dismiss the 23 cases was filed during the week with both Stipendiary
Judge Alfred Y. K. Manigbolor and Judge A. Blamo Dixon of the Ninth Judicial Circuit Court.

He however noted that despite the dismissal of the 23 cases, the state reserves the right to refile any of the cases following the procurement of witnesses.

The 23 released allegedly committed theft, terroristic threat, and rape.

The recent release brings to 33 the total number of inmates released during the August 2014 term of court and 52 in the last three terms as 19 were released during the February 2014 term.

Recently, the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Liberia cautioned judges to be discretional in  sentencing those convicted, considering the raging Ebola scourge in the country in order to decongest the various prison compounds in the country.
LINA/BK/GDJ/TSS

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