A former fighter and member of the Revolutionary United Front (RUF) has defended his commander, Gibril Massaquoi at a Finnish Appeals hearing in Monrovia, Liberia.

The witness, a former radio operator for the rebel group said Massaquoi was a peaceful man that was valuable to the RUF.

Earlier, Massaquoi had been exonerated by a lower court in Finland after prosecutors failed to prove that the former RUF Commander breached safehouse rules in 2002 and went to Liberia where he committed war crimes. They argued that the former RUF Commander joined the Liberian government forces to fight against the Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy.

The allegations of war crimes, according to the prosecutors, claimed that Massaquoi committed mass murders at Waterside in Monrovia.

However, the witness tagged as Defence 10 said the former commander never left the safehouse in Freetown in 2002 but was taken there as a protected witness.

He said Massaquoi was in Liberia in 2000 as part of an external delegation for peace purposes and never returned.

This testimony by Defence 10 contradicted himself after he was reminder by prosecutors that he had told the lower court that his former boss did return to Liberia in 2001 to collect his girlfriend.

Apart from that, most of what defence 10 said was in tandem with other defence witnesses who denied Massaquoi’s presence in Liberia at the time the prosecutors claimed.

The former rebel commander himself had denied the allegations against him while the trial continues on Wednesday in the Liberian capital.