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

We are talking about five lever arch files. In addition, we have the material disclosed to us during the cross-examination of Mr Koumjian. That's another lever arch file plus the initial disclosure. So in total we now have some 165 documents which were disclosed to us by 3.30 on Friday afternoon.

Now, upon receipt of the one set of documents, which was not provided to us in electronic format, my case manager, Ms Moilanen, attempted to photocopy them. Unfortunately, the photocopier in the Defence office was not working. She inquired from Court Management whether or not it would be possible to have them reproduced and was told that could not be done. So consequently, copies have not been made and have not been provided, either to me or to Mr Taylor or, indeed, any other member of my staff apart from our case manager, who received it.

Now, the context in which I make this application, Mr President, is this: In our submission, the Office of the Prosecution by this disclosure concedes that on one interpretation, as demonstrated on Thursday of last week when Mr Koumjian sought to deploy certain documents, ostensibly purely for impeachment purposes, when we discovered that almost all of those documents sought to be used could also be probative of the guilt of the accused.

Now, there is nothing surprising here, since the borderline between cross-examination as to credit and cross-examination on issues that may be probative of guilt is difficult, if not impossible, to determine. We demonstrated that, we submit, on Thursday last, and your Honours were perforce required to indicate to Mr Koumjian that all of the - almost all of the documents he sought to be - introduce fell into both categories delineated by your Honours in your decision of last week.

Now, we having come to this stage, in our submission, before any document can be used we must address whether, first of all, it is in the interests of justice that the document be used; secondly, that it does not violate the fair trial rights of the accused, bearing in mind also given the volume of the material now disclosed, that this Court is enjoined by Rule 89 to always have in mind the spirit of the statute and the general principles of law to be applied in this tribunal; and furthermore, this Court is also enjoined by Rule 90(F) to avoid the wasting of time.

As an indication of how, in our submission, time will be wasted, let me give your Honours an example of one of the documents disclosed on Friday afternoon. It's a declaration by Mia Farrow, the actress, following a telephone conversation she had with Mr Koumjian, in which - and that conversation took place in August of this year - in which that Hollywood actress claims that Mr Taylor caused a diamond to be given to her whilst in South Africa. That is an indication of the quality of the material this man is now supposed to be dealing with when all of this is dumped on him at the last minute.

Now, in our submission, bearing in mind all of these principles, bearing in mind also the unfulfilled expectation expressed by your Honours at paragraph 22 of your decision in anticipation of being in a position to make specific orders relevant to the documents sought to be used, it seems to us a most efficient and helpful use of the Court's time for your Honours now to be provided with all of the documents given to us so that the expected and necessary judicial supervision can be applied. This would have the advantage, in our submission, that all parties would know where they stand and the trial could proceed expeditiously.

So the first application I make is that the proceedings be adjourned today to give your Honours time to consider all of this material, because in our submission, assessing each document as it is presented in evidence will be time consuming and affect the smooth running of the trial and would also prevent the prejudice caused to the accused by the stop-start nature of his cross-examination over the last four weeks.

Now we need to bear in mind, of course, that this is the first tranche of documents. Full disclosure will not be concluded until close of business tomorrow, so we anticipate receiving even more documents. The question I ask is this: How is the accused and his lawyers supposed to assimilate all of this material whilst he is in Court from 9.30 to 4.30 every day, along with his lawyers, being cross-examined? How is he supposed to do that? How are we supposed to advise him in these circumstances?

By way of example, suppose these documents taken in toto totally undermines the defence put forward by the defendant? We, as his lawyers, in the circumstances would be professionally obliged to advise him, for example, to reconsider his plea. We would be professionally required to do that. How are we going to do that if we do not have, to quote the statute, "Adequate time and facilities for the preparation of his defence and to communicate with his counsel of his or her own choosing", how is he supposed to exercise that right?

Because in our submission, your Honours - and I say this quite bluntly - the Prosecution have totally lost sight of the guarantees provided to an accused by Article 17. They have already sought to ignore his access to legal advice. They have also sought to ignore his right to be provided in detail with the nature and content of the case against him. Now they are seeking to ignore, in our submission, his right to have adequate time and facilities to prepare his defence.

We need, in this regard, to contrast the situation during his examination-in-chief when we were required by order of this Court to provide the Prosecution with copies of documents we intended to rely upon two weeks before they were due to be used, and in our case, in a couple of days, we have been presented with this. In our submission, it's just not fair.

So the two requests we make are these: Firstly - and I make no apology for making this request, because, in our submission, it's prompted by the cavalier attitude displayed by the Prosecution towards this accused's rights under Article 17. So I am firstly asking for an adjournment and that this cross-examination should not continue until the new year.

So I am asking that we be given the remainder of this week and also the recess in order to properly assimilate this material, advise the accused as to his rights so that the guarantees provided to him under Article 17 are properly recognised.

Now, before I sit down, could I make one correction. I am told that the diamond in South Africa was actually given to the model Naomi Campbell, but this was reported to Mr Koumjian in that telephone conversation by Mia Farrow.

Mr President, that is my application.

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