From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
In Sierra Leone, 500,000 Fine or 3 Months Imprisonment for Rioters
By Dauda Bangura
Dec 15, 2010, 17:40

Magistrate Josiah O. Wellington has handed down sentence on twenty four (24) convicts who pleaded guilty of ten count charges ranging from riotous conduct to possession of offensive weapons.

Morlai Kamara, Saidu Kamara, Abdul Rahman Mansaray, Mohamed Konneh, Amadu Barrie, Alpha Kamara, David Mansaray and seventeen others, were amongst seventy eights (78) youths arrested by police on Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th December 2010 during deadly riots in Freetown.

Prior to handing down the sentence, the presiding magistrate of the Freetown Magistrate Court No.2 asked the convicts if they had anything to say. All of them asked the magistrate to tamper justice with mercy. Their cries were re-echoed by the defence counsel, who appealed to the magistrate to hand down reasonable sentences on the convicts.

Magistrate J.O Wellington then ordered that the convicts pay a fine of five hundred thousand leones each or go to prison for three months. The magistrate further ordered that all twenty four convicts should not take part in any procession either legal or illegal for a period of twelve months.

The remaining accused persons, who earlier pleaded not guilty, are expected to make their second appearance today Wednesday 15th December 2010.

The riots in question took place during various musical rallies organized by LAJ of the Red Flag Movement and Menace the General on Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th December respectively in Freetown.

The riots were deadly to an extent that the police had to intervene with teargas canisters to disperse the rioters.

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