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

Madam President, good afternoon again. I first wish to address some of the remarks that were made this morning, in particular first the suggestion that I said that SAJ Musa had led AFRC forces into Freetown. I made no such submission to your Honours. What I said was, and I quote according to the transcript, "Under SAJ Musa they commenced the attack and pursued the attack independently." That's the submission I made, that submission is correct. I then went on and said that SAJ Musa was assassinated, and it is true I didn't then elaborate that those forces continued on to Freetown under different leadership, but they did. So those forces were not lead into Freetown by a ghost. The second submission that was made by my learned friend opposite was concerning Rambo Red Goat, and whether or not there was a finding by the Trial Chamber that indeed the RUF, whether in the form of Rambo Red Goat or anyone else, had supported or committed crimes in Freetown. And I have several submissions on this point. The first is that in over 500 pages of findings on crime base, including a section that specifically addresses crimes committed in Freetown, there is not a single finding that specifically says that RUF forces committed crimes in Freetown. Now, to be fair to what the Trial Chamber said, they do frequently say using boilerplate language RUF/AFRC forces. Sometimes they do give more specific indications as to who they believe were the perpetrators. Never is there a finding of perpetration of a crime by RUF forces or specifically the Red Lion Battalion under Rambo Red Goat, and as the Chamber later makes clear the only forces that might have been, the only forces that it found from the RUF that were in Freetown was that group led by Rambo Red Goat. Now what specifically did the Chamber say about whether or not - and this is my third submission on this particular point - about whether or not Rambo Red Goat's group committed crimes? I quote from paragraph 4393 of the Trial Judgement: "There is no direct evidence showing that the former NPFL fighters from the AFL personally committed crimes or that the crimes committed were committed specifically by members of the Red Lion Battalion which was part of a larger group that committed the crimes." So there you have a broad finding saying that there was -- confirming that the Chamber had not found that any members of this group had committed crimes. And finally, your Honours, at paragraphs 5707 and 5708, you'll see the Trial Chamber describing the arrival of a group of -- of the Red Goat group in Freetown and despite saying that they're well-armed, implying that they had a substantial amount of ammunition with them, there's no mention in the Trial Chamber's Judgement saying, "And they gave these weapons to AFRC forces," and that omission we say is significant. There's no finding saying that they shared those resources. And the only point that I was attempting to make in all this was to tell you that there is no finding of material support by Charles Taylor to the AFRC forces in Freetown. That doesn't mean that there aren't attempts by the Prosecution to characterise the Trial Chamber's findings as showing that there was some kind of indirect support. But in respect of direct support, we must be clear that there was no direct support by Charles Taylor and none found by the Trial Chamber to those AFRC forces as they moved into Freetown and as they committed crimes there, as found by the Chamber. And finally, your Honours, know that of course we challenge vigorously the Trial Chamber's finding that Red Goat's forces were there at all, contrary to the adjudicated fact which has been discussed so extensively here before you. Now, your Honours, you heard my learned friend opposite make reference to Ibrahim Fofana, who was one of the victims of the terrible crimes that occurred in Sierra Leone, and his view that Charles Taylor was, if it hadn't been for Charles Taylor, this wouldn't have happened to him. Now, I don't know why the Prosecution deems it necessary, much less appropriate, to rely on what is obviously a very emotionally charged belief by a victim, who of course believes that, of course has that sentiment, but that kind of belief is not the legal standard of causation that applies in respect of substantial contribution under the actus reus of aiding and abetting. Indeed, I'd suggest to you it's simply not relevant at all and it shouldn't have been brought before you in the context of these proceedings. But if that's the kind of concept that the Prosecution considers appropriate, then I have to ask what exactly do they consider is the meaning of specific direction? Because the kind of causation that the Prosecution seems to be relying on reminds me of the very famous movie "It's a Wonderful Life," where the main character has the opportunity to see what would happen to the world if he hadn't been born. And what can happen when you don't have that influence can be sometimes quite dramatic, even if you don't even know, even if the influence may be very minor, even if your act may be extremely minor, the consequences may be dramatic and terrible, and no one is denying that those consequences may be dramatic and terrible, but actus reus is about the connection between action and consequence, not about the dramatic consequence. Now, you've just heard now during the Prosecution's submissions this afternoon about several more issues and I propose to address you on those specific issues. The Defence did in fact refer to two cases, the van Anraat case --

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