The transcripts of the trial of Charles Taylor, former President of Liberia. More…

Good morning, Madam President and counsel opposite. For the Defence today, myself Courtenay Griffiths. With me, Mr Morris Anyah, Mr Silas Chekera, Ms Logan Hambrick, Ms Kathryn Howarth - sorry, Hovington, Mr Tor Krever, Ms Elisabeth Espinosa, Ms Fatiah Balfas, Ms Salla Moilanen and Mr Simon Chapman.

I am sorry, Madam President, that I seem somewhat distracted. The reason for my distraction is this: About seven minutes ago I was told, contrary to a witness order filed by the Prosecution, that the first witness to be called this morning is Mia Farrow. The reason for my concern is this: We received last night, gone 8 o'clock, proofing notes from Carole White who was supposed to be the next witness. So if there was a concern and difficulty in having her first thing this morning, we should have been notified last night, rather than seven minutes ago.

Now, by CMS 1013, Public Prosecution witness list for 9 August of this year, we were told that the first witness to be called this morning was Carole White. Where is she? She is definitely in The Hague and why we know she is definitely in The Hague is this: We received an email from the Prosecution, timed at 20:15 last night, containing proofing notes from that witness. So she is here.

We received that at 20:39. So where is she? Why is it that we are now being told that Mia Farrow is to be the first witness called when we have prepared and planned our strategy based on their notification that the first witness to be called will be Carole White.

Now, my concern stems from this: This is a Prosecution who have been quick to criticise the Defence when we have erred in the most minor way, and now here they are playing, we say, fast and loose with this Court. It should not be allowed.

The witness is here, she should be called, and I am seriously angry about this because they are playing fast and loose with this Court and it shouldn't be allowed to happen.

Where is the witness? Unless, of course, some accommodation is being made because Ms White, as I have been informed, has an appointment later on today. This Court is not here for the convenience of witnesses. This Court is not here for a Prosecution to be pandering to the niceties of witnesses in this way. This is frankly totally out of order. And, in our submission, you judges must do something about it and tell them to call the witnesses in the order they filed so many days ago.

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