TUBMANBURG, Bomi – Courts around the country are reopening for the May term, and Judge Karboi Nuta has told prosecutors and defense lawyers that he expects the justice system to play its role during the COVID-19 pandemic. He announced that the court would begin working on releasing pre-trial detainees who had stayed in jail for more than two court terms without trial.
“We will be visiting the prison consistent with Section 18.1-2 of the criminal procedural laws of Liberia,” the 11th Judicial Circuit Court judge said. “So we call on the defense counsel and the state prosecutor to take note because we will be releasing people that have spent more than two or four terms of court without being tried.”
A number of counties have already decongested their prison population to reduce the chance of prisoners getting COVID-19. At the Zwedru Central Prison in Grand Gedeh, seven pre-trial detainees were released in late April. In Lofa, the Voinjama Central Prison also worked with the court to reduce the number of inmates from 78 to 55.
Bomi’s county attorney, Atty. Abraham Tamba Gborie, promised to work together with Judge Nuta to reduce the number of detainees and the cases on the court’s docket.
The circuit court has eight criminal cases and nine civil cases to hear for this May term. The criminal cases include three rape cases, in addition to cases involving murder, money laundering, and theft of property.
Featured photo by the Supreme Court of Liberia