Ms. King was convicted of misappropriating government funds in a matter that was brought against her by the country’s Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC). She was sent to a five year prison term which she served at the Female Correctional Center in Freetown at the former site of the Special Court for Sierra Leone. She was also ordered to pay a fine of ninety million leone (US$ 10,843).
Ms. King finished serving her sentence in February 2017 but was kept in prison because she could not pay the fine. Her plight came to the attention of the Board in May 2017 following a visit to the prison to assess the justice needs of both prison and remand inmates, at which point the Board started providing legal assistance to her.
The Legal Aid Manager, Ms. Cecilia Tucker made an application for bail for her which was granted by Justice Bosco Alieu on Thursday, October 25.
The Executive Director of the Legal Aid Board, Ms. Fatmata Claire Carlton-Hanciles assured Ms. King that the Board will provide her legal assistance to the end. ‘She has been kept in prison for an extra twenty months since she finished serving her five year prison term and she still has not been able to pay a penny of the fine,’ Ms. Carlton-Hanciles. ‘We will like to know from the Court how much longer she will be kept in prison to make up for the fine levied against her,’ she added.