Monrovia - Former Minister of Lands, Mines & Energy, Eugene Shannon, has appeared before Criminal Court “C” at the Temple of Justice in connection to his alleged role in the Global Witness uncovered bribery scandal – one of the biggest in Liberia’s history.
He was escorted to the court by his lawyer, Cllr. Emmanuel B. James after refusing to follow the Court Sheriff who had gone to his home to serve the Writ of Arrest.
Shannon who was unidentified but referred to as “Big Boy 1” in The Deceivers – the Global Witness Report on Liberia, is alleged to have received US$250,000.00 in his capacity as Lands, Mines and Energy Minister to trigger changes in Liberia’s procurement laws in order to declare Wologizhi Mountain a non-bidding concession area to favor Sable Mining Liberia’s interest.
He was indicted alongside other accomplices for bribery, criminal conspiracy, economic sabotage, criminal solicitation, and criminal facilitation.
Meanwhile, Shannon who was nearly committed to the Monrovia Central Prison was saved by his wife, Loris M. Shannon, who took custody of him, assuring the court of producing him whenever he is needed by the Court. Mrs. Shannon is the deputy minister for administration at the Ministry of State for Presidential Affairs; she was also escorted to the court by her mother.
His lawyers had filed a motion to include him on the criminal appearance bond filed by the co-defendants since the amount on the face of the bond is far in excess of the amount for which he and other defendants were indicted. The court is yet to take a decision on the motion but has released him to his wife who now serves as an interim guarantor.